The National Assembly’s Media, Youth & Culture Committee (MYCC) discussed the key role that organised youth Community Based Organisations (CBOs) and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) must play for the future of Seychelles during an event on Saturday 22nd June at the CEPS headquarters at Orion Mall.
The meeting brought together representatives of several youth CBOs and NGOs and members of the National Assembly.
The MYCC Chairperson, Hon. Gervais Henrie, referring to a growing lack of interest in politics by the young generation, said that as future leaders it is important for young people to take note of what is going on around them.
“As elected representatives of the people we are concerned that not enough teenagers and young adults are showing an interest in politics. This need to change,” said Hon. Henrie.
The youths present explained the reasons they believe their peers do not care about politics.
They say for many, politics seem a confusing, complex and sometimes insignificant topic to discuss.
They also think politics does not affect their lives and find it irrelevant to them as there are no policies for young people.
Members of the MYCC impressed on the youth that if they look closely at government policies, they will realise that they affect the lives of young people more than they think. School curriculum, access to contraceptives, public transport and cost of living are just a few of the many things, determined by the government, affecting the daily lives of young people.
The MYCC would like to see more young people getting involved in politics through youth CBOs and NGOs where they can lobby policy makers and petitioned MNAs on issues they think are important to them.
“Civic engagement keeps the wheel of society oiled and running smoothly,” added Hon. Henrie.
He called on all the youth who are already engaged in various forms of activism locally to inspire and encourage their peers to take up civic duties, as it has been proven that it is the right and responsible way to become engaged adults.
The young people present also raised the trust issue stating that many young people believe politicians cannot be trusted and that getting involved brings the worst out of anyone.
The MNAs reminded their audience that being a politician is a job like any other; that they are first and foremost a person who lives and works in a community; and that the lack of confidence in politicians is often unfounded.
The MYCC has pledged to continue this conversation with the young population, to address them directly, to hear their concern and give them a reason to be engaged in the lives of their community and country.