By Afeez A Adenekan
The stage is set for the maiden edition of the Youth Town Hall Meeting themed:”The Roles Of Youths In The Forthcoming 2023 Election”.
The event is the brainchild of Hon. Ibrahim Adenekan, the Councilor representing ward C2 in Ifako Ijaiye Local Government, Lagos, Nigeria.
It is scheduled to come up on the 7th of October, 2023 at the council secretariat, Idiagbon, Ifako, Lagos.
According to him,”For political systems to be representative, all parts of society must be included. When young people are disenfranchised or disengaged from political processes, a significant portion of the population has little or no voice or influence in decisions that affect group members’ lives.
“To make a difference in the longer term, it is essential that young people are engaged in formal political processes and have a say in formulating today’s and tomorrow’s politics.
“Inclusive political participation is not only a fundamental political and democratic right but also is crucial to building stable and peaceful societies and developing policies that respond to the specific needs of younger generations.
“For young people to be adequately represented in political institutions, processes, and decision-making, and in particular in elections, they must know their rights and be given the necessary knowledge and capacity to participate in a meaningful way at all levels.
“When there are obstacles to participating in formal, institutionalized political processes, young people can rapidly feel disempowered. Many tend to believe that their voices are not going to be heard or that they will not be taken seriously even if they are heard.
“In new and emerging democracies, the inclusion of young people in formal political processes is important from the start.
“Young people’s active contributions can bring democratic values to life, leading to the overturning of authoritarian practices.
“All electoral stakeholders have a role to play in promoting young people’s participation in formal decision-making processes. For this role to be effective, it is necessary to understand the interconnected nature of the obstacles to participation in these processes that young people encounter,” he averred.