The Deputy Speaker, Thomas Tayebwa, has advised leaders in developing nations to invest in young people through quality education and decent work.
Speaking at the 2023 Commonwealth Business Forum in London, United Kingdom Tayebwa said the reference to the youth as “leaders of tomorrow” is self-defeating and unsustainable in a world dominated by the young people.
He said that countries that dismiss young people as unimportant do so at their peril and will pay a heavy price.
He described youth unemployment as a time bomb and called for concerted efforts to create the required jobs for the young people.
“If you don’t invest in young people, then I don’t know what you’re investing in. You are not investing in your business, in the future and in sustainability. It can only be sustainable if you invest in a generation that is going to take over,” the Deputy Speaker said.
Tayebwa also expressed concern about the inequality of incomes in the world.
Quoting figures from the 2022 Global Wealth Report by Credit Suisse, one of the world’s largest services providers, Tayebwa said 52.5 per cent of the world population now own less than 1.25 per cent of the global wealth.
“When you look at the world population, and the world demographics according to that Credit Suisse report, you will find that only five per cent of millionaires are outside North America, Europe, China, and Asia-Pacific region,” he said.
He predicted that Africa will have a quarter of the world’s population by 2050.
“You either invest in the young people, especially in the developing world or they are going to be a problem for you,” he reiterated, warning that the poor people will hit back if they are not supported to transform themselves through education and decent jobs.
The forum empowers, engages, energises, and envisions global youth in association with the Uganda High Commission in London and the 50th Anniversary of the Commonwealth Youth programme
Dr. Arjoon Suddhoo, Deputy Secretary General of the Commonwealth, called for youth involvement in decision-making, saying the development will foster inclusiveness.
“I think in many of our [Commonwealth] countries, unfortunately, the young people are not present in decision making and that’s a big mistake. We need to get them involved,” he said.
Nimisha Madhvani, Uganda’s High Commissioner to the United Kingdom told the Commonwealth Business Forum that President Museveni is a big believer in the youth and said that Uganda looks forward to welcoming Commonwealth Business Forum for partnerships.