President Goodluck Jonathan has told the National Youth Council of Nigeria to partner with his administration to fast track youth development in the country.
Jonathan gave this advice when he received the award of the “African Youth Medal of Peace” presented to him by the Pan-African Youth Union, an international youth-based organisation.
The President, who was represented by the Minister of Youth Development and supervising Minister of Sports, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, advised the NYCN to work closely with government to accelerate the process of growth and development.
He also called on the youths to partner with the Ministry of Youth Development to be able to settle its leadership crises and also achieve progress.
Abdullahi said: “All we hear about NYCN is one person going to court; getting one injunction or the other, taking one process to court, seeking to grant one process – this Ministry will not be a part of that.
“So the challenge is for NYCN to put its acts in order and be willing to align its priority to fit into the priorities of the Ministry.
“When this happens, we will see you as worthy partners.”
Abdullahi urged the youth to seek relevance on a platform of competitiveness and progress and also endeavour to make themselves relevant to the priorities of the Transformation Agenda of the government.
While presenting the award, Comrade Ben Duntoye, the immediate past president of the Pan-African Youth Union, thanked the President for his contributions to youth development through the Transformation Agenda.
Duntoye said the award was aimed at celebrating the President for his contribution to peace building and economic growth in Africa.
Duntoye, however, called on the government to address the issue of overaged youths posing problem to the youth council.
According to him, if the government could carry out reforms to define the age limit of youths who are qualified to be elected to the executive of NYCN, it will help youth development.