Youth activists: Our leaders must demonstrate commitment to corruption fight

Various youth activists at the just ended 11th African Youth and Governance Convergence (AYGC) have called on African governments to demonstrate strong commitment, dedication and determination in the fight against corruption.

They were deeply concerned about the pervasive nature of corruption, resulting in massive diversion and siphoning of state resources for investment in social infrastructure, education and professional training.

The youth activists urged governments to swiftly initiate criminal prosecution and stiffer punishments, including longer jail terms and confiscation of assets of corrupt officials.

The AYGC was organised by the Youth Bridge Foundation (YBF) in collaboration with the National Youth Authority (NYA), and was attended by 140 youths comprising 120 delegates and 20 committee chairpersons from 32 African countries and the diaspora.

The delegates critically assessed the Africa Union’s Agenda 2063 under the theme: ‘Partnership for Youth Development-Key to Building Africa Beyond Aid’.

The youth recommended the creation of independent regional anti-corruption bodies for effective and efficient coordination of their activities, where member states served as checks and balances on each other, emphasised community fora to discuss governmental institutions and hold duty bearers accountable for transparency, probity and accountability.

“All stakeholders, including the youth, legal practitioners, law enforcement officers, journalists and politicians, must be actively involved in the discussions and solutions to eradicate the incidence of selective justice, concerned about the ignorance of institutionalised systems to address challenges in the legal sector, we further admonish African governments to focus on Alternate Dispute Resolution mechanisms to ensure speedy, effective and efficient delivery of justice,” the youth activists pointed out.

Seth Oteng, the Executive Director for Youth Bridge Foundation, explained that the AYGC had since its inception in 2009, served as an important platform for grooming young people in Africa and the diaspora on leadership and community impact among other topics. –GNA

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