On 17 December 1999, in its resolution 54/120, the United Nations General Assembly endorsed the recommendation made by the World Conference of Ministers Responsible for Youth (Lisbon, 8-12 August 1998) that 12 August be declared International Youth Day.
The Assembly recommended that public information activities be organized to support the Day as a way to promote better awareness of the World Programme of Action for Youth, adopted by the General Assembly in 1996 (resolution 50/81).
Security Council Resolution 2250 on Youth, Peace, and Security represents an unprecedented acknowledgment of the urgent need to engage young peacebuilders in promoting peace and countering extremism, and clearly positions youth as important partners in the global efforts.
As the United Nations turns 75, and with only 10 years remaining to make the 2030 Agenda a reality for all, trust in public institutions is eroding. At the international level, against the backdrop of an increasingly polarized world, the international system of governance is currently undergoing a crisis of legitimacy and relevance.
In particular, this crisis is rooted in the need to strengthen the capacity of the international system to act in concert and implement solutions to pressing challenges and threats (examples include some of the worst contemporary conflicts and humanitarian emergencies, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change).
Speaking on the theme of International Youth Day 2020, Youth Engagement for Global Action
The Founder and President of Helpline Foundation For the Needy Abuja” Dr. Jumai Ahmadu made the call seeking to highlight the ways in which the engagement of young people at the local, national and global levels is enriching national and multilateral institutions and processes, as well as draw lessons on how their representation and engagement in formal institutional politics can be significantly enhanced.
The NGO expressed worry that despite the intellectual and numerical strength of the youths in the country, they are still relegated to the background in the political space, noting that the time is now apt to change the narratives inline with the 2020 theme.
Dr. Ahmadu said that there is an urgent need to make available incentives for the youth to actively be involved in the running affairs of their countries
Dr. Jumai Ahmadu equally implored the youth to take advantage of the social media space, which is largely dominated by them.
Enabling the engagement of youth in formal political mechanisms does increase the fairness of political processes by reducing democratic deficits, contributes to better and more sustainable policies, and also has symbolic importance that can further contribute to restoring trust in public institutions, especially among youth.
Moreover, the vast majority of challenges humanity currently faces, such as the COVID-19 outbreak and climate change require concerted global action and the meaningful engagement and participation of young people to be addressed effectively
She opined that to break the circle of failure, youth must take responsibility, by knowing their rights and empowering their minds with core nationalistic values, in order to become part of the solutions to the problems of the society and the world at large in this era of a global pandemic.