The Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports; Mr Curtis Perry Kwabla Okudzeto has led a delegation to Malta to participate in the 2nd Commonwealth Youth Ministerial Taskforce Meeting.
The meeting is under the theme: "Resourcing & financing youth development: Empowering young people.
Addressing the plenary, on November 5, Mr Okudzeto was hopeful that the 'Youth Connekt Summit' which was held in Rwanda would go a long way to continue to propel entrepreneurship, creativity and innovative drive among young people to take advantage of job creation opportunities in the digital space and other areas.
He noted that the 'Youth Connekt programme' is a multifaceted Youth Empowerment Model focused on leveraging youth employability, entrepreneurship and civic engagement through innovation.
Outlining some of the initiatives undertaken by President Akufo-Addo government, Mr Okudzeto disclosed that the Nation Builders Corps (NaBCo), National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP) and the Youth Livelihood Farms programme spearheaded by the National Youth Authority (NYA) are to help reduce youth unemployment.
He explained that under NaBCo, 100,000 graduates have been enrolled in a move to address graduate unemployment with the focus on health, education, agriculture, technology, governance and drive revenue mobilisation whilst NEIP has also been supported with an amount of US$10 million as seed fund for startups for young people with entrepreneurial ideas and projects.
Expressing concerns on the fight against drug abuse, the Deputy Minister stated, "The recent development in the abuse of the use of Tramadol and other substances has become a worrying trend.
The NYA through its operational outlets in the regions and districts, he said, has launched the campaign against Tramadol and substance abuse during the 2018 International Youth Day. The next step is to establish rehabilitation centers across the country to rehabilitate victims of Tramadol and other substance abuse".
Mr Okudzeto recommended to the meeting that a platform should be created at the Commonwealth Secretariat, to collect and collate progress made by member countries on commitments or resolutions made at the 9th Commonwealth Youth Ministers' meeting in the various sub-regions.
This, he believes, will promote effectiveness in the role of the taskforce.
The delegation included the Chief Executive Officer of the NYA, Emmanuel Signyet Asigri, Mrs Dianah Boateng, Protocol Officer, Ministry of Youth and Sports, Director for Administration (NYA), Mr Ekow Eshun, and an Administrative Officer (NYA), Miss Anita Abonyi.