Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Youth Development Fund Bill: Civil Society Groups demand audience with Akwa Ibom Governor

Youth Development Fund Bill: Civil Society Groups demand audience with Akwa Ibom Governor

Over 53 NGO’s and civil society organizations under the auspices of the Youth Advocacy Cluster – YAC, is continuing its campaign for the call for public hearing of the Akwa Ibom Ibom Youth Development Fund - #AKYDFBill  sponsored by the Chief Whip of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Hon. Emmanuel Bassey, member representing Ini State Constituency

The advocacy campaign started in October 2015, as the bill passed second reading on 27th April, 2017 and was moved to the committee stage under two committees; Committee on Youths, Security and Sports headed by Rt. Hon. Victor Udofia, member representing Ikono State Constituency and Committee on Economic Planning and Development headed by Rt. Hon. (Sir) Udo Kerian, member representing Oruk Anam State Constituency. This was to be later followed by the Public Hearing of the Bill before being passed into law.

Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months, and many months have passed making it over one year and the Public Hearing of the Bill is not in sight, despite promises made.

The group, Youth Advocacy Cluster in a renewed effort for the passage of the Youth-friendly/Youth-centric bill, is embarking on a new campaign tagged ‘Our Dear Governor Speak With Us’. This is aimed at having an audience with the executive governor of the State, His Excellency Mr. Udom Gabriel Emmanuel. This is to formally introduce the AKYDF Bill to him for a better articulation and outline its benefits to youth and the State in general.

AKYDF Bill is a sustainable plan for youth development in Akwa Ibom State. It also aims at improving youth economic development, attract investors/donor supports, stimulate growth and increase State Government’s revenue base.

It can also be recalled that the Lagos State Government had passed a similar bill into law in 2016 known as the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund with the sum of N25bn was earmarked for four years, targeting to impact 100,000 entrepreneurs by 2019.

This has resulted in the influx of funds from donor agencies and corporate organizations such as UNDP, leaving the funds earlier provided by the government unused.

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