Vice President Boakai On Youth Challenges

Tuesday, 13th December 2011

Monrovia, Liberia - Liberian Vice President Joseph N. Boakai Sr. says the Unity Party-led Government has given the youth the required encouragement recognition and is doing everything to empower them.

He said youth are equally taking advantage of the opportunities being afforded to make their presence felt, noting that many of the newly elected legislators are youth.

Speaking Wednesday at his Capitol Building office when the winners of the 2011 Your Big Year, Liberian Carielle Doe and Malaysian Michael Teoh who are on a global tour, paid a courtesy call on him at his Capitol Building office.
He however observed that there is still need to break the tradition of male dominance in Liberia which is emerging from nearly two decades of conflict, noting, ďour female counterparts should be equally recognized.Ē

Vice President Boakai however commended Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for bringing pride and dignity to Liberian women by becoming the first female head of state in Africa and for winning the Nobel Peace along with Leymah Gbowee, another Liberian woman. He hoped the accomplishments of the two would inspire other Liberian women to strive for higher heights.

The Liberian Vice President intimated that there was need to recognize the youth to ensure that they play a major role in the national decision making process.

He however noted that the major challenge the Government is faced with is to properly equip youths to ensure that they are not just heard but also become nation builders.
Vice President Boakai observed that another challenge post-war Liberia has to grapple with is restoration of the nationís cultural values which have been eroded as a result of nearly two decades of  civil conflict, and cited respect for elders as one of the values that need to be restored among Liberian youths. The Liberian Vice President also stressed the need to instill the spirit of voluntarism in Liberian youth.

He then congratulated Mr. Teoh and Miss Doe for their achievement, which, he noted will bring pride to their countries.

Miss Doe and Mr. Teoh emerged winners of the Your Big Year global competition among 145,000 youths from 158 countries. Ms. Doe and Mr. Teoh who have been on a global tour since January 6, 2011, have so far visited 20 countries.

They said they engage in voluntary work on the environment, humanitarian projects, medical and educational projects, in any country they visit The two youths who arrived in Liberia on Wednesday, November 30, are expected to travel to the Ivorian border with the NGO, Equip Liberia, to experience firsthand the plight of Ivorian refugees.

Teoh and Doe are also expected to meet with Liberian youth groups to remind them about their responsibilities. They will also meet with the acting Mayor of the Monrovia City Corporation Mary Broh, the Minister of Youth and Sports, Etmonia Tarpeh and University of Liberia President Dr. Emmett Dennis. These discussions will dwell on the need to empower Liberian youths and the need to encourage young people to get involved in voluntary work.