By G9ija

Participants at an open data advocacy students outreach in fiscal and extractive transparency have urged youths to be change-agents for the enthronement of sound fiscal governance practices at all levels of government.

The call was made on Friday in a communiqué co-signed by Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC) and other stakeholders at the outreach in Lagos made available to newsmen in Abuja.

It said youths could be change agents by participating actively in the country’s fiscal and extractive management processes.

According to the communiqué, the outreach was aimed at introducing issues of transparency and accountability as a major fiscal responsibility concern in revenue and extractive resource management.

It said this was toward identifying opportunities for educating youths on how the engagement in the campaign for a transparent and accountable public and extractive sector systems would help secure posterity.

“The outreach is to provide a platform for students in tertiary institutions to engage practical development issues in relevant sectors of national life.

“It is also to provide students in tertiary institutions access to knowledge that effectively complements their academic learning in preparation for active service to the nation.

“The outreach provided an avenue for re-orientation for students in tertiary institutions to develop positive and constructive values and shun negative vices. ‘’

It said that youth’s participation in politics was instrumental, through sensitisation and awareness campaigns toward generating the interest to initiate and sustain relevant conversations on governance issues.

The communiqué urged students to sustain their commitments as change-agents for the enthronement of sound fiscal governance practices at all levels of government by participating actively in the country’s fiscal and extractives management processes.

It also urged relevant agencies with fiscal and extractives transparency to conduct further engagements like sensitisation and awareness campaigns and capacity building exercises.

It said this was to guide youth influencers in tertiary institutions on ways to implement their expected roles as change-agents.

The communiqué said that step-down exercises between participants and their networks should be supported by CSOs ,national and sub-national governments and their agencies to complement the above-mentioned sensitisation and capacity-building exercises.

It said that this would help to amplify and sustain advocacy to influence change in the country’s fiscal and extractives system architecture.

It said that open data as a means of ensuring transparency and accountability in government business activities through providing correct and credible information should be readily available to citizens with effective feedback channels.

The communiqué encouraged participants to further engage and access open data channels to acquaint themselves better and demonstrate their commitments toward influencing positive change in public finance management.

It added that there should be a strategic partnership to re-orient the youth toward generating interest in political participation for more inclusive representation that better protected their interests in governance.

Others organsiations, which signed the communiqué are Fiscal Responsibility Commission (FRC), Nigerian Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (NEITI) and Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC).

Others are Oxfam Nigeria, Student Anti-corruption Vanguards, Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH); Lagos State University (LASU) and Lagos State Polytechnic (LASPOTECH).

The rest are Federal College of Education, Akoka (FCET-Akoka), Michael Otedola College of Primary Education and Epe (MOCPE).