A youth solidarity march designed to create oneness and understanding among youths in the country is being planned as part of activities marking the country’s 46th Independence Anniversary.
Slated for the 19th of February 2011, the event will be in a form of March past from the July 22nd Square to Arch 22nd, where speeches will be delivered. The solidarity march, described to be the first of its kind, is also meant to create avenue for young people to put forward their agendas as well as reflect on the numerous developments from 1994 to date under the dynamic leadership of the Gambian leader, His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr Yahya Jammeh, whose government continues to support the course of young people in the country.
Speaking at a press briefing Monday at KMC, Pa Malick Ceesay, the secretary to the organising committee of the solidarity march, explained that the objective of the event is to call all the youth of this country, male and female, irrespective of their political affiliations. “We want to show to the nation and our people that the young people of this country are one and really appreciate what has transpired from 1994 to date, as the country has a youthful population of over 60 percent and there are a lot of youth interventions and structures as well,” he said, citing the empowerment of the youth in key decision-making and the NYSS, an institution meant to empower young people with basic necessary enterprise skills to enable them become gainfully employed.
Ceesay further stated that the National Youth Council (NYC) is also at the forefront in organising and advocating for the rights of young people in the country. “The National Youth Enterprise is also there to generate income for themselves, their families and even communities and the nation,” he said, while calling on young people to come out in their numbers to grace the event.
For his part, Pierre Minteh, the chairperson of the organising committee, described the event as timely in our political dimension looking at the situation that the country is moving. He said: “We felt as young people that it is our duty to rise up and pick-up the actual role and responsibilities that is expected of us as young people of the country and to make sure that we play our part in the development process of this country. So when we got this idea, we deemed it fitting to invite other colleagues who are in the area of youth activities to look at it and to work in unison.”
Minteh explained that the organising committees comprises of diverse people from various areas saying the idea is meant to unite the youth folk. “We thought it is important to come up with some strategic ideas and programmes that we believe from now on, will create a gap between the government of the day and the young people of the country,” he added.
He acknowledged that President Jammeh has been overhauling the young people in the country to take up their rightful responsibilities so as to contribute their quota towards the socio-economic development of the country. “So, we felt it is time now for us to answer to that call in diverse ways and the coming of this youth solidarity march is of great importance.
The target is to mobilise more than 5000 youths and the event will be held in Banjul,” he said, while calling on the host, youths of Banjul to come out in their numbers to make the event a success. “So far the youths of West Coast Region have been contacted and we are calling on everyone to come in their numbers to make the event a success. It is a national event irrespective of political affiliations, no matter where you belong to but as long as you are a youth who want to see the nation moving, you should join the march,” he concluded.
Seedy Njie, a nominated National Assembly member also echoed similar sentiments, saying that the importance of this upcoming rally cannot be overemphasised. He added: “We are living witness to the developments in the country since President Jammeh took over in 1994 to date. He [President Jammeh] has championed the cause of young people and women.
Now we deemed it fitting to come in our thousands as young people to express our profound appreciations for his numerous developments in the country as well as to reassure him of our commitment to work with his government in the development of the country.” Other speakers at the press briefing included Lamin Camara, a divisional youth mobiliser in KMC.
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