Africa-Press – Lesotho. Lesotho like other countries commemorated International Youth Day (IYD) with the aim to empower youth in all aspects of their lives. The event was held in Maseru on Saturday.

In his keynote address, the Prime Minister, Mr. Samuel Ntsokoane Matekane said youth form part of the nation and is one important cluster that needs to be appreciated.

He remarked that with the high rate of unemployment and other related issues, youth have suffered mostly hence the government has put in place a few measures to respond to some of these challenges.

He said the government through various ministries and departments is working tirelessly to see to it that programmes that accommodate youth are established.

The Prime Minister announced that sometime in October, there is going to be a forum hosted by Lesotho that aims to bring along investors and business sectors together to deliberate on ways to develop the country.

He promised youth that their voices will not go unheard, adding that youth must also act to establish businesses for a better future. On the same note, the United Nations (UN) Resident Coordinator, Ms.

Amanda Khozi Mukwashi said this commemoration must bring positive results as it aims to give incentives to youth. She said it is wrong to always say youth is the future generation, yet the existence of youth today is already the start of their future.

She stressed that youth must be used, especially in platforms where discussions and decisions are made. Ms. Mukwashi noted that young people have great ideas that if one or two are picked up and molded, much can be achieved.

She said violence among youth is escalating and that is simply because they spend most of their time doing nothing, commenting that if one of them comes up with something worthy, they become jealous and as a result, engage in fights that shift focus from real issues.

The Minister of Gender, Youth, Sports, Recreation, Culture and Social Development, Mr. Pitso Lesaoana also commended the ministry and its partners for organizing the event. Mr.

Lesaoana said his wish is for the event to open a platform for youth to reunite and exchange ideas on how best they can tackle issues of unemployment, and many other challenges they are faced with.

He said the Ministry is also onto programs and policies that are meant to empower youth. One of the youths Mpho Lebesa, the Founder of Plant One Tree said they are thankful that the government through the ministry pulled the event to show them appreciation.

She said some of them have already started projects that are flourishing, saying they wish to have more youth getting engaged for their own benefit. The International Youth Day is commemorated annually on August 12.

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