On the occasion of the African Youth Charter adoption in the Executive Council Decision of the Banjul Summit 2006 (DOC.EX.CL./292 (IX) the 1st of November was proclaimed and instituted as ‘The Africa Youth Day.’
Africa Youth Day is a day set aside every year to promote the increased recognition of youth as key agents for social change, economic growth and sustainable development in all areas of African Society. It is an occasion to celebrate the youth on the continent, opportunity to contribute and channel youth motivation, energy and creativity towards political, social and economic renewal.
In democratic political systems, those who occupy executive offices enjoy the privileges of incumbency.
During elections for example, they obtain a lot of free publicity and often, public support, by simply doing their normal work of supplying public goods such as job creation programmes and public works. They benefit from information on opponents because they have access and control over security and intelligence agencies.
They get to travel round the country at government expense except when they go out for explicit campaign purposes. The difference between a campaign trip and a trip to open a hospital for example could be difficult to establish. Enjoying the privileges of incumbency is therefore a legitimate benefit that all executives in positions of power enjoy. This is a problem for democracy as it makes it difficult for the opposition to compete effectively against incumbents.
Questions as to whether young people of Sierra Leone are really serious about fixing a brighter future for themselves and taking their rightful position in the political, social or economic landscape of Sierra Leone are what have become very much worrisome to many Sierra Leoneans and by extension the world.
It was in this same country that youth in ghettos, ataya bases, colleges, universities, schools, entertainment centres and youth gathering points have been grumbling and complaining bitterly of total neglect and sidelining by politicians when it comes to providing them their basic needs and also giving them brighter future.
The trepidation, the Da Vinci Code-like cliff-hanger suspense, and the best kept secret of the secrecy that surrounded the succession issue within the ruling All People’s Congress (APC) are now over. For the APC has now minted Dr Samura Kamara, the current Foreign Affairs Minister who has had stints with the Bretton Woods Institutions and the Commonwealth Secretariat, as the mascot to white-flag the party in next year’s presidential election.