A dialogue between youth and policymakers opened doors for a positive and meaningful youth engagement with the policymakers to increase youth engagement in the decision-making process.
The JAAGO Foundation and the Asia Foundation hosted the virtual dialogue with youth representatives from 64 districts and policymakers from different parties recently.
Three panelists from ruling Bangladesh Awami League, Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) and Bangladesh Jatiya Party (JaPa) were present on the occasion. They encouraged the youth to be involved in the policymaking process and the education system and discussed ways to overcome various problems in the process.
In our country, online education is not very realistic, because not everyone has the same economical background and facilities. This inequality will be reduced if we can provide internet access and devices through Grant and subsidised rates
Barrister Nahim Razzaq, member of parliament (MP) from Shariatpur-3 constituency, said, “We have undoubtedly suffered because of the closure of educational institutions. But we don’t know if we are prepared to open institutions yet.”
“We need to have an idea of how much internet is available at the grassroots level and provide them with the internet at a subsidised rate so that everyone can have the same facilities,” he added.
Tabith Mohammed Awal, member of BNP’s national executive committee, said, “Our teachers and authorities should be trained to accept mentally depressed students and help them, and also our schools must be prepared to maintain rules of social distancing.”
He also put emphasis on political accountability in this situation, saying, “Accountability is essential, but it should come from both sides. Both sides must have the mindset to be accountable. We need to start with those who want to have administrative accountability and gradually expand it to all sectors.”
Ahsan Adelur Rahman, MP from Nilphamari-4 constituency, said, “In our country, online education is not very realistic, because not everyone has the same economical background and facilities. This inequality will be reduced if we can provide internet access and devices through Grant and subsidised rates.”
He further said youth’s participation in politics is also important. “It is important to have a commitment towards the country and its people, and that's why student politics is important."
"We have to run advertising campaigns and guide the youth that community works can change our society. If we arrange more dialogues and discussions with youths we can motivate them to serve our country more,” Ahsan Adelur Rahman added.