Islamabad | 24 January 17
Azad Jammu and Kashmir Minister for youth and sports, Chaudary Muhammad Saeed pledged to launch a new youth and sport policy for AJK soon. Speaking at a training workshop titled 'youth political participation by enhancing advocacy skills' organized by Centre for Peace, Development and Reforms in collaboration with the British Council , he assured the young people that Youth Task Forces will be established in the days ahead as promised by Prime Minister, Raja Farooq Haider Khan.
He said that the task forces would be established after consultations with the major youth organizations. Youth Minister also seemed hopeful about the prospects of the inclusion of a Kashmir team in Pakistan Super League, hopefully in the next season. Besides, he also divulged that during his recent visit to the UK, he invited many international sports brands to come to AJK to explore opportunities to open their franchises in AJK. He also said that his ministry would work with the civil society organization and young people to promote sports across the AJK and in this connection game competition will be organized. He acknowledged that Youth Ministry has limited financial resources, but we would try hard to introduce new initiatives with the close coordination Ministry of Education and other relevant stakeholders. While highlighting the challenges he stated that the Government needs to impart education, which should enable youth to fulfill the market needs and demands. We also need to create linkages between academia and industry. While answering a question, he underlined the urgent need of a comprehensive planning for sustainable development.
The programme brought together experts and young learners, and included interesting activities like group discussions, lectures as well as training sessions to enhance the leadership skills of the participants and to enable them to gain the practical understanding of governance, advocacy, lobbying and related concepts. Around 25 young participants from a cross section of Azad Jammu Kashmir' society participated in the training and exhibited great enthusiasm.
Speaking on the occasion, Executive Director CPDR, Ershad Mahmud hailed the announcements made by the minister for youth development and youth policy-making, and assured that CPDR in collaboration with the British Council will support his ministry. He also remarked that the participants showed great interest in understanding the mechanisms of government formation and working. " Before coming to this training, we were critical of the Government primarily because the people at the helm of affairs were inaccessible, but now we have learned some good methods of how to access the Government and how policy-making can be influenced by youth", mentioned one of the participants of the training.
Dr. Waqas Ali, who is directing this program, shared with the audience that CPDR has trained 150 young people so far, in relevant to better governance, community participation and social work. He also claimed that in the future, they are planning to bring in more and more young people in these training programs, to make them effective citizens.
Malik Waseem, the representative of the British Council, assured that his organization will continue to provide such platforms and resources to youth in AJK and will look forward to new ideas for youth, which they can work on in the future to ensure swift progress in AJK.