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Thursday, 08 May 2014 23:14

Day 2 - Second Plenary Session

Policymakers Reiterate the Importance of Listening to Youth


The plenary session on “Mainstreaming Youth in the Post-2015 Agenda: What We Want” was held at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) Thursday morning.

The first speaker of the day was Ms. Saba Loftus from the U.N. Major Group on Children and Youth who said that it is really refreshing to see local youth interacting with international youth.

"People tell you that you are the leaders of tomorrow,” Ms. Loftus said. “You do not have that luxury. You have to be leaders today. The post-2015 agenda is our chance to shape what we want our world to look like.”

 

Minister of Youth Affairs and Skills Development Mr. Dullas Alahapperuma and Mr. Douglas Ragan, Project Manager for Research and Analysis of UN-HABITAT were also at the plenary.

 

The last speaker of the session, Secretary to the President Mr. Lalith Weeratunga, said the strength, the faith and the imagination of young people are precisely the elements that uplift our societies and communities and make them resilient, stable and richer – and countries would be poorer if this potential is not recognized and harnessed.

 

"It is apparent that the problems of the youth, as a significant group of the world population, have to be adequately addressed, not only for global development to progress, but also to enable them to add value to the development process,” Mr. Weeratunga said. “Thus, empowering young people, socially, economically, intellectually and politically, across all divides, is critical to see tangible progress in global development post-2015.”


Minister of Youth Affairs and Skills Development Mr. Dullas Alahapperuma and Mr. Douglas Ragan, Project Manager for Research and Analysis of UN-HABITAT were also at the plenary.