Botswana: The First Lady of Botswana, Mrs Neo Jane Masisi, has called on the Youth of Botswana to step up and start leading in dialogue surrounding issues of their livelihoods. The First Lady said this during a Youth Dialogue session she hosted in collaboration with the visiting Spouse of the President of the Swiss Confederation, Mrs Muriel Zeender Berset, at Maitisong this morning.
Mrs Zeender Berset is in Botswana on a three-day state visit with her husband, the President of the Swiss Confederation, Alain Berset, at the invitation of the President of Botswana, Dr Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi.
The Youth Dialogue, hosted under the theme “Drug Use – Let’s talk about the solutions”, was organised for both in and out-of-school youth. The purpose was to accord the Youth a platform to engage with each other on issues surrounding drug usage among the youth, drug impact on youth lives and come up with possible solutions.
First Lady Masisi has noted that the drug usage problem among the youth needs a multi-sectoral approach to be dealt away with and called on parties to stand together and fight the “devil’s” problem. She further cited that the problem does not only affect the users but also impacts the lives of their families, communities, the nation and largely the economy.
Mrs Masisi pleaded with the participants to adopt a “not leaving anyone behind” approach and thus requested them to take the learning and messages of the dialogue with a view of sharing with those youths, not in attendance.
In appreciation, Mrs Berset applauded Mrs Masisi for the innovative way of making the youth take responsibility for their futures. She called on the youth to put on creative hats and bring possible solutions that will aid the eradication of the drug use problem. She asked them to draw inspiration from their leaders and also share knowledge among themselves.
In attendance were also the Assistant Minister of Education and Skills Development, Naniki Makwinja, Assistant Minister of Youth, Gender, Sports and Culture, Buti Billy, Senior Government Officials and in-school and out-of-school youths from across the country.