The Youth, Peace and Security Coalition-South Sudan has called for establishment of commission in honor of the commitment to the resolution 2250 of the UN Security Council on youth agenda.
The resolution was adopted in 2015 to explore how conflict impacts young people’s lives and what must be done to mitigate its effects, as well as how youth can be meaningfully included in creating peaceful communities.
It focuses on five pillars of Participation, Protection, Prevention, Partnership, and Disengagement and Reintegration.
“Young people in South Sudan remain at the center of the efforts to build peace and must be fully supported if the sustainable peace is to be achieved,” partly reads a statement issued on Friday during the marking of the 7th Anniversary of the UN Security Council resolution 2250 on Youth, Peace and Security Agenda in Juba. The coalition said it was concerned by the numerous threats facing young people across the country.
These include unemployment, lack of access to decision-making positions in the government and favoritism, nepotism among government officials, and discrimination in the private and humanitarian sector.
In addition, civic space has shrunk over the years as security organs target youth who speak up against bad governance.
Unemployment in South Sudan approximately stands at 11 percent of the population while youth unemployment is at 50 percent, and it continues to rise, according to a UNDP July 2022 report.
It says youth unemployment is exacerbated by low levels of education, limited skills, and a weak economy.
The coalition urged both the government and the UN agencies to put measures and guidelines that protect young people.
“We urge the government, UN and all the stakeholders to set out dedicated guidance on the protection of young people, including those who engage with the organization in the context of peace and security to protect young peace builders and human rights defenders,” it added.
With more than 72% of South Sudan being the young people, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Country Director in South Sudan, Ademola Olajide, said young people should be given a greater stake in peace for South Sudan to realize economic growth for supporting youth to play a role in national agenda.
“…there is something we must remember if we are looking for young people to build national economy. Those young people must have the capacity to contribute to the development,” Olijide stated.
“As they say dry sticks do not grow leaves, so we must begin to work through systems that help us build the capacity of young people to contribute peace agenda.”