For passing into law the Akwa Ibom Youth Development Fund Bill (AKDF Bill), members of the Youth Advocacy Clusters on Wednesday paid a thank-you visit to members of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly.
In a speech by the Executive Director of Youth Alive Foundation, Dr. Udy Okon represented by the Programmes Lead, Mr. Kingsley Atang thanked the Speaker and other members of the State House of Assembly for supporting youth development by passage of the AKYDF Bill into law.
Mr. Atang while appreciating their efforts for a job well done, also asked that the lawmakers persuade and ensure that the governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel gives assent to it. “This will increase the economic empowerment of the youths in a strategic and holistic manner, backed by a legal framework”, he added.
“I would say you do not need to thank us for simply doing our job. You, and other Akwa Ibom people elected us to serve and passing that law is one of those services are mandated to give. But then we accept and take this appreciation by you as an encouragement and a source of strength”, Speaker Luke said in his response to the youths.
“The passage of such Bill or any which should benefit the youths is our responsibility and that is why the electorates voted us into office. In the governors completion agenda, there has been provision for SME funding and the AKYDF Bill is an easy path for such provision and we will continue to push for the executive assent”, Rt. Onofiok Luke added.
The Speaker equally noted that it would have been strange if an assembly made up of youthful representatives and former youth leaders like himself and Honourable Emmanuel Bassey, lead sponsor of the bill, refused to act timeously on the youth development bill and other matters relating to youth development.
It would be recalled that the State House of Assembly had passed into law the Youth Development Fund Bill setting in motion a process for government to make formal provisions to fund youth development initiatives.