The Parliamentary Select Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture has called for the incorporation and harmonisation of all youth-related agencies and modules to ensure proper coordination of programmes and activities.
While expressing concern about the uncoordinated youth-related agencies and modules of youth programmes and activities, it said the situation allowed for the duplication of programmes.
It, therefore, called for an inter-sectoral or inter-ministerial body to harmonise youth policies, agencies and modules under the Ministry Youth and Sports.
This came to light when the Technical Committee of the National Youth Authority (NYA) working on the review of the National Youth Policy met with the Parliamentary Select Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture in Accra, to brief them on the progress of work on the review process.
This is the first time since 2010 that the policy is being reviewed, with support from the Commonwealth Secretariat, although a provision in the policy stipulates a review every five years.
The NYA started the review of the policy last year and it is expected to be completed and launched in September 2019.
Various stakeholder consultative meetings have been held across the country to solicit views to be incorporated in the policy.
The members of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture were briefed extensively on the progress of work since it started work in October last year.
The Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Youth, Sports and Culture, Mr Alex Agyeman, said during the 2016 general election campaign, the current government promised to bring all the youth-related agencies and modules together to ensure effective development of the youth.
However, he said that had not been done yet and such fragmentation of programmes only led to waste of government revenue and duplication of programmes.
He said there was the need for collaboration between the various ministries and departments involved in youth-related programmes and policies with the Ministry of Youth and Sports as the body to oversee such activities.
“We have many of such youth agencies, policies, programmes and activities being rolled out by the government through various ministries and departments. They are not harmonised and so there is repetition and there is no body to oversee that there is a united front,” he said.
Additionally, he said when there was a united front on youth issues, the Minister of Youth and Sports could make a better and stronger case at the Cabinet level to enhance youth development in the country.
Mr Agyeman further suggested that a youth desk could be created at the various ministries and agencies implementing various programmes and activities to ensure effective coordination.
He urged the youth to actively participate in governance and democratic process so that they would be able to articulate and express their needs for redress.
Inter-ministerial coordinating committee needed
The National Democratic Congress (NDC) MP for Kumbungu Constituency in the Northern Region, Mr Ras Mubarak, in his submission reiterated that an inter-ministerial coordinating committee on youth affairs was needed to ensure that youth-related policies and programmes were well coordinated.