AYFST Nigeria was officially launched in March 21, 2007 by the former Minister of Information and Culture, Federal Republic of Nigeria, Barr John Nnia Nwodo. The event took place during a conference organised by the AYFST Nigeria in collaboration with ATPS. The theme of the conference was “Basket of Opportunities: Refocusing the Youth towards Agriculture Wealth Creation and HIV/AIDS Prevention”. The conference was organised in line with AYFST plan of action 2007-2010. This plan of action is a result of several consultations amongst the African youth on how to organise their voices and consolidate their activities to make substantial impacts on Africa’s development.
Objective of the Workshop:
- To build the capacity and enhance the skills of youth in school and out of school
- For inclusive participation
- To officially start off the AYFST Nigeria Network
- Catalyst for action
Outcomes of the Workshop:
The workshop exposed youth participants to a new, critical and creative thinking on the essence of entrepreneurship, wealth creation, agricultural practices and skills acquisition. They were provoked to discussion and finding solutions to the theme of the workshop and challenged to participate actively in policy processes, policy dialogue and policy practice on issues that have direct effect on them. It also resulted in the recruitment of 92 youths into the membership of AYFST.
The youth looked at how they can be involved in tapping the potentials of agriculture in creating employment and wealth in Nigeria. The participants also analyzed the reasons for vast unemployment among the youth in Nigeria which include:
- The inability of the government to develop sources of revenue outside the oil sector
- The negative perception of the youth towards agriculture and a strong bias towards white collar jobs
- The problem of “ghost” workers in Nigeria’s civil service
- The refusal by the over aged workers to retire
- Lack of innovation exposure and expertise
- High level of corruption and political instability
- Poor policy formulation and implementation by those in authority.
- Lack of motivation, energy and vigour
- The decaying educational system
As a prelude, AYFST Nigeria successfully participated in Shaping the Future of Science Technology and Innovation in Africa
AYFST Nigeria also organised a public forum on “Examination Malpractice: A threat to Development of Science and Technology.” Another seminar was held on the theme “The Challenges of Nsukka youths in the contemporary society” under the auspices of 5-golden stars in collaboration with ATPS Nigeria on December 27,2007. The objectives of the workshop were:
- To provoke the youth to find solutions to their problems.
- To educate the youth on the essence of innovation on youth employment, poverty reduction and wealth creation.
- To exchange ideas that will pave way for new actions and collaborations.
- To provide a forum for youth and stakeholders to exchange ideas on the challenges facing the youth in Nigeria.
- To create opportunities for peer-peer networking
“There is a need to inspire the youth to find solutions to their problems and educate them on the essence of innovation on youth employment, poverty reduction and wealth”