In his historic address at the United Nations General Assembly on the 19th September, 2017, President Adama Barrow, spoke at length about the plight of Gambian youths in their quest to earn a better living abroad.
“The journey is so risky that many perish at high seas and never reach their destination. Countless others disappear into immigration detention centres or vanish in the sands of the Sahara Desert,” he said, referring to Europe.
Barrow said youths who are able to complete the journey are often dismissed as economic migrants and send back home. These senses of hopelessness and frustration, he added, provide fertile ground for smugglers and extremists groups to recruit innocent youths into criminal underworld.
“Young people do not deserve this experience.”
He said they deserve the chance to enjoy a safe and prosperous future at home creating new employment opportunities that provide young people with sustainable incomes and connect them to a revitalize land , health and productivity environment is an investment in the future of the nation.
President Barrow noted that the issue is a key priority in the country’s National Development Plan.
He said when land productivity declines and water shortages intensifies young people from rural areas are often sent away to ease the burden on families and to find new sources of income.
He said these sadly explain why many young Gambians have being forced to make the long and dangerous journey to Europe.
Meanwhile, scores of Gambians youths return from Libya yesterday and details of that development will be published soon.