Not fewer than thirty thousand young people will be registered as beneficiaries for a soon to be instituted Cross River Youths Social Welfare Programme.
The governor of Cross River State, Professor Ben Ayade gave the hint at the U. J. Esuene stadium, Calabar, where thousands of young people converged for the first ever All Progressives Congress mega youth summit organized by the APC Youth Lobby Group.
The governor pledged commitment to transform the lives of more young people through the programme, which he described as a social security scheme that would be driven by young people and traditional rulers across the 196 political wards.
According to him, “The government of Cross River State will start a youth social welfare programme, a social security programme”.
He urged young people to register for the scheme at their wards through the ward chairmen, councilors and traditional ruler, and charged the APC Youths leadership in Cross River to drive the registration process.
Speaking of his achievements, the governor said, “this is the only government that has deliberately included young people in every stage of governance”.
He advised, “Do not think that your situation is so bad, stay on the part of morality and consciousness. Do not judge me by the appointments, judge me by the number of weddings in Calabar, the number of new houses, the number of young men, who today drive cars.
“Value me by the number of crimes we have put under control. Throughout the whole nation, statistics shows that Cross River State remains the safest state.
“So, let me assure you, believe in yourself. Nobody can change your destiny it is only you, who can change your destiny. Have the fear of God, but the day your conscience is gone you are no longer human”, the governor asserted.
The keynote speaker and founder of Future Africa, Mr. Iyinoluwa Aboyeji commended the governor for the support given to young people in the political and governance space.
Aboyeji explained that his investment of about a billion naira in oil palm value chain targets young people of Cross River State and charged youths to take advantage of opportunity in the business and political stage to change the current narrative.
He said, “It is incredible to see the kind of support this state is giving to young people and I hope that they can continue because young people are 70 percent of this country’s population.
“We have earned the right and the capability to be able to invest alongside our mothers and fathers. Professor Ben Ayade has moved this dream to a reality that is impacting the lives of people”, he noted.
The summit was attended by the Deputy Governor, Professor Ivara Esu, former Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Kanu Agabi as well as the former Special Adviser to President Olusegun Obasanjo on Legislative Matters, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa and the Speaker of the Cross River House of Assembly, Mr. Eteng Williams.