Youths Deliberate on Migration
Friday, December 07, 2007
Migration has become one of the biggest problems confronting the continent of Africa over the years and The Gambia is no exception. In recent times we have seen a lot of young, able-bodied Africans ether migrating from the rural to the urban areas or to Europe. The number of attempts being made by young Gambians to migrate to the Canary Islands by boat have been on the increase. The phenomenon is a concern to many individuals and organizations. One such organization is The Gambia National Youth Council. The council, in collaboration with “This Generation of GRTS”, recently organized a national forum on the issue.
The event, held at the Youth Monument in West Field, brought together various stakeholders including representatives from groups such as security, government, the private sector, parents, media and young people themselves.
Speaking at the occasion Mambanjick Njie, Deputy Permanent Secretary at the Department of State for Youth and Sports, described the journey as “risky” and advised youths to desist from engaging in the practice.
Inspector Sulayman Secka, Police Public Relations Officer, said police can’t do it alone and called on the general public to be supportive.
The event was characterized by various interventions from the participants. One such intervention came from one Mbye Bittaye, a youth activist. He said that the root causes of the menace need to be addressed first, citing unemployment and under employment as two examples.
Abdoulie Faye, programme Officer of the NYC, said that enacting a law on human trafficking is one thing but argued that this cannot entirely solve the problem. He raised the question as to whether there is any data on unemployment in The Gambia.
Mr Sambou Barrow, from the Department of State for Trade, Industry and Employment, in response, said there is currently no such data available.
Lamin F Bojang, speaker of the National Youth Parliament, blames the business community in the country for not investing in the young people. He also expressed his dismay at the absence of policy makers at the forum.
Some of the themes common to the various speakers were the creation of more opportunities for young people, foreign missions and the need for businesses to focus more on youth.
Other prominent speakers include Pa Malick Ceesay, Executive Secretary of the National Youth Council, Ebrima Jaw Manneh, deputy Editor-in-Chief of the Daily Observer.
Alfusainey Gano of NYC was moderator at the occasion.
Source: The Point