Tendai Mugabe Senior Reporter
President Mugabe has been invited to chair a meeting of African countries on youth empowerment to be held on the sidelines of the 70th United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York later this month.
The invitation came from Malawi President Peter Mutharika who was recently appointed the United Nations Demographic Dividend and Champion of Youth Empowerment.
President Mutharika’s aspiration is to see President Mugabe using his hat as African Union chair to popularise youth empowerment in Africa. Malawi Labour and Manpower Minister Mr Henry Mussa, who is also the Government chief whip, delivered the invitation to President Mugabe at State House yesterday.
Speaking to journalists after meeting the President, Mr Mussa said youth empowerment was pertinent. “We are here to deliver a special message and a special invitation to His Excellency President Robert Mugabe from his dear brother the President of Malawi Peter Mutharika,” he said.
“It is more about youth development, it’s all about youth empowerment — recognising the youths as the future leaders, in fact current leaders of our nations.
“Of Malawi’s population today, 60 percent are youths and we are saying it’s high time we go into top gear in as far as demographic dividend and investing in the youths is concerned.
“So, the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, who is the current chairman of the African Union, will be expected to preside over co-convening of a high level meeting at the United Nations during the forthcoming 70 United Nations General Assembly,” said Mr Mussa.
“The whole agenda is to shape the nations that constitute Africa as a continent and let alone the world on raising the profile of the youths into social and economic development so much that it is no longer a question of football associated with youths, taekondo and things like sports. Let us talk more about their economic development.”
Zimbabwe embraced youth empowerment a couple of years ago and established a ministry specifically to deal with youth empowerment and related issues.