Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Youths urged to be assertive in their views on sexuality and accountability

As the 3rd Africa Sexuality Health and Rights Conference kicked off at the International Conference Centre Abuja, Mrs. Nike Esiet, one of the Plenary speakers and the Executive Director at Action Health Incorporated AHI, Lagos reiterated the need for governments to give a listening ear to youth perspectives on sexuality, poverty and accountability. Their correct perceptions and interpretations, according to her, would go a long way in determining the level of their participation in nation building.

Speaking at the end of the Pre-conference Youth summit, which held yesterday at the Taraba Hall of the Centre, Esiet said that the youths in Africa should be aware and conversant of the different instruments available to address the afore-mentioned issues. She maintained that though Nigeria and other African countries are signatories to a number of declarations that concern youths, sexuality, poverty and accountability, their domestication would still not yield the expected results/situation until the youths become knowledgeable of the different instruments available to put them to practise.

Esiet added that the conference would have quite a number of lawyers in attendance, so quality consideration will be given to the issues of the practicability of the local, national, and international instruments for actualising the various declarations.

She finally urged the international youth delegates and those attending from Nigeria to be vocal and to participate actively so as to ensure that they are heard and their opinions are counted.

* By Nnenna Ike

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