Dr Babatunde Osotimehin, Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and Under-Secretary General of the United Nations has commended the people of Ghana for the warm hospitality during his three day working visit.
He said “my stay in Ghana has been a nice experience because it has given me the opportunity to see a wide range of activities and people and I have really enjoyed my stay”.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, he called on Ghanaians to come together and support the country and the continent at large to be able to achieve sustainable development.
He said the demographic dividend is about how to empower young people through education and health and exposure so that they can make choices on their own, adding that the demographic dividend agenda is a society agenda and not just government.
Dr Osotimehin said sustainable development cannot be achieved without assuring that all women and men, boys and girls, enjoy the dignity and human rights to expand their capabilities; secure their reproductive health and right, find decent work and contribute to sustainable economic growth.
He said the youth is the biggest group in Africa’s population and if the continent wants to develop well it must make sure everyone is part of it.
“The sustainability of every country is its human resource, and Africa till today has depended on its human resources especially the youth which is its largest asset and as such must make sure to invest in them.
The UNFPA Executive Director noted that Africans must also invest in education of the youth which is quality and has entrepreneurship, training and creativity and skills building so that the youth can see themselves as complete and be able to start businesses on their own.
“It will also not happen without putting in place aggressive family planning measures to change the structure of the population. Reduce considerably and ensure that people make choices about their family sizes,” he said.
He said the demographic dividend is a whole society agenda and not just about governments adding that there was the need for the private sector, agencies and individuals to support the effort to ensure its realization.
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