by Leke Obadimu
Since the creation of Odeda local government in Ogun state over 15 years ago, the Odeda Youth Council, of National Youth Council Of Nigeria, organized the first ever Odeda Youth Summit/Arts & Crafts exhibition with the theme: Accelerating youth empowerment for sustainable development.
Declaring the Summit open, the chairman Odeda Local Government, Architect Wole Adebayo acknowledged the efforts of the passionate youths who have succeeded at creating a platform for discussion between the government, stakeholders and the youths themselves. He stated that we are now in a global world where technology is creating leverage for both the leader and the follower, the challenge of climate change and various economic recessions are realities of our present days. He however stated that in the midst of all these challenges, youths must begin to seek new and creative ways to motivate, inspire and challenge themselves towards greatness. While he acknowledges the efforts government is making to accelerate youth empowerment, he promised that government will continue to give more attention to the plight of the youths.
Toluleke Obadimu reiterated that the summit was organized with the aim of creating a platform for the youths in the local community to engage various stakeholders in discussions towards accelerating youth empowerment for the growth of the community.
The summit had four plenary sessions with different speakers and panelist engaging youths in a robust discussion and proffering realistic ways to accelerate youth empowerment for sustainable development
The first plenary session was chaired by Comrade Akeem Ambali, Nigeria Labour Congress,Ogun State Chairman who discussed about the dignity of labour: a panacea to social ills. The second plenary session was also chaired by Mr Idowu Ogundimu, CEO Zimcon Services who discussed about how youths can start micro-enterprises to reduce unemployment. The third and forth plenary discussed the power of vision and dream as youths: which was co chaired by Babatunde Solanke, a personal development consultant and Dr Lawrence Hollumiday , Paragon International Group of Schools.
The Summit also had an Arts and crafts exhibition with cultural displays by the Igede youth association and Ewi rendition by various social groups.
The Odeda Local Government chairman was later led on a tour of different crafts and innovation exhibited by the Odeda community youths
The Summit ended with a communiqué and a resolve by youths to be problem solvers and not problems to be solved.