Ekiti State governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, has promised to give youths in the All Progressives Congress active participatory roles in the core politics of the state.
The governor made the pledge while responding to the request by members of the Strategic Lobby Committee in Ekiti on Thursday.
The Strategic Lobby Group, empowered by the chairman of the CECPC, Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State, has representatives drawn from the six geopolitical zones of the country who have been meeting with leaders of the party to push for the inclusion of youths in key party positions.
As part of the South West team, Dayo Iyaniwura, Babajide Akeredolu, Titilope Gbadamosi, Tolu Ibitola, Kazeem Faleye and Egghead Odewale (a member of the National Lobby Group) pleaded with Governor Fayemi to engage more youths in leadership roles than he is currently doing.
Iyaniwura, who spoke on behalf of the team, appreciated Governor Fayemi for being very intentional about youths in the state.
“We had no reason to doubt that Ekiti would be our easiest visit because in your cabinet you have ticked all the boxes. We know you have been doing a lot for youths, but we are asking for more.
“The youths should be given more opportunities to participate from the ward level up to the national level. We have a target we are pushing for: one, 10 per cent young ward chairmen; two, 10 per cent young LG chairmen; three, a young organizing secretary for the state exco.”
They also asked for state youth leader of between the age of 18 and 35 years, and 30 per cent of ward exco to be youths.
The governor, in his response, assured them of his support, saying that youths indeed must begin to occupy relevant positions not only in the party but also in governance.
“I agree with you that youths must be given opportunities. You have the energy and the number. We have seen a lot of youths who are intellectually sound and can contribute to nation building. We’ll look at your request and give the necessary support.
“In conjunction with the leadership of Ekiti State APC, headed by the party chairman, Barrister Paul Omotoso present with us in this meeting, we are promising you 40 per cent youth inclusion even though you asked for 30 per cent,” Fayemi said.
In her vote thanks, Titilope Gbadamosi implored the state government to give good representation to the women too, asking that the deputy ward chairman should be a woman and the party should also explore the potential of willing and able young women who are aspiring to the position of Women Leaders in the party.
The team proceeded to Ondo State where they were received by the deputy governor, Lucky Aiyedatiwa, and the state party chairman, Ade Adetiloye.
The deputy governor of the Sunshine State said the youths in the state can testify to how much the governor, Rotimi Akeredolu(SAN), gives to the youths.
“Before your coming here, we have always included our youths in key positions. We made it mandatory that 25 per cent of all government and party positions is reserved for youths.
“We have taken decisive steps to include them and give them opportunities,” he said.