First Lady urges Malawi youth to take lead in national development

The First Lady Gertrude Mutharika has called on youths in the country to jealously guard the peace and tranquility that the country is enjoying and take leak in national development.

First Lady Gertrude Mutharika who
presided over the International Youth day
activities in Balaka. -Photo by Francis Mphweya, Mana

Mutharika made the appeal on Monday 21st August 2017 when she led Malawians in commemorating World International Youth Day.

The official ceremony took place at Manica Ground in the Eastern Region District of Balaka.

She said most of the times youths are enticed to indulge in negative practices such as being used to incite violence and tarnish other people’s images, behaviors which she said are uncalled for.

“The future of the country dwells in the youths since they are the engine to the development of the country. Let us all embrace the fact that we are very much needed in the development of the country by working hand in hand with the government in various sectors of society,” she said

The First Lady also urged the youth to take an active role in reducing the population of the country by avoiding early marriages and unwanted pregnancies.

“Do not rush into early marriages as this spoils your future” said Mutharika.

“In 1966 the population of Malawi was pegged at four million and now it is at 17 million. If population growth remains unchecked, by 2030 the population will be at 26 million, yet our land is the same,”she ADDED.

The First Lady also advised the youths to work hard in education and prevent themselves from indulging in bad behaviour that include
alcohol and drug consumption.

“You need to be cautios and maintain a life style that is productive. Avoid having multiple sexual partners and also avoid smoking and
alcohol abuse,” she said.

“As youths, you have a big role in transforming Malawi” emphasized the First Lady.

On the part of the environment,the First Lady asked the youth to plant more tree in bare lands and avoid littering.

USAID mission director Littleton Tazewell concurred with Dr. Mutharika by urging the youth to avoid early marriages by to stayingin school.

“There are three things that I have for the youth today; one is for the youth to stay in school; two, the youth should avoid getting married before maturity and lastly, the youth need to protect themselves,” he said.

Grace Scotch, a youth Parliamentarian spoke on behalf of fellow youths in the country.

She said youths in the country lack capital to start small businesses to sustain their lives.

“Government should consider uplifting our lives by giving us some soft loansas capital for businesses in line with the skills that we have,” Scotch said adding the youthsrecognize the role that they have in developing the country but lack opportunities to do so.
International Day of the Youth was instituted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1991 and is celebrated on August 12 worldwide.

The day was celebrated globally under the theme ‘The Youth Building Peace,” but in Malawi it was localized to, “Youth Building Peace: Role of the Youth in Population,Health,Environment and Entrepreneurship.”

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