Naymote Partners for Democratic Development, in collaboration with the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA), has begun Inter-universities and Colleges Debates between and among eight universities and colleges across Bong, Grand Bassa and Montserrado counties under the theme, “Youth Perspectives on the Local Government Act 2018.”
According to a release, the competition officially began on November 7, 2019, at the Unification Pavilion, Buchanan City, Grand Bassa County, with Grand Bassa Community College locking horns with Vision College in the first encounter of seven matches to be conducted across the project’s locations; Grand Bassa Community College emerged as winner of the first match.
Over 300 youth and student leaders, women leaders, college students, local leaders, representatives from civil society organizations (CSOs) and community-based organizations (CBOs) attended the first match held in Grand Bassa.
Emmanuel Weinyue, MIA Decentralization and Local Government Specialist, said that the competition will deepen both the locals’ and young people’s understanding of the law.
Weinyue urged participants to lead the process of popularizing the Local Government Act (LGA). The debate on the LGA is expected to run from November 7- December 5, 2019. It is designed to popularize the LGA, develop university students’ skills and knowledge to critically think, discuss and analyze the importance of the LGA of 2018 towards local economic development, participatory decision-making and job creation for young people, help them to develop a civic, political opportunities and ownership of the LGA of 2018 implementation.
NAYMOTE Program Assistant Bako Korboi Shuaibu, Jr., said that the competition became necessary because of citizens’ limited understanding about the LGA.
“So far, participating schools have received copies of the LGA of 2018; they frequently asked questions of the LGA, and funding to deepen their research on the LGA,” the release said.
Participating schools include Stella Maris Polytechnic University, United Methodist University, Smythe Institute of Management and Technology, African Methodist Episcopal University from Montserrado County, the Cuttington University, and Bong County Technical College from Bong County, and Grand Bassa Community College and the Vision College in Grand Bassa County.
Other matches to be held will include Cuttington University Vs Bong County Technical College on November 11, 2019, in Gbarnga, Bong County; Stella Maris Polytechnic University Vs United Methodist University and Smythe Institute of Management and Technology Vs African Methodist Episcopal University on November 15, 2019, in Monrovia.
The competition’s Grand Final will take place on December 5, 2019, in Monrovia. The winner from the tournament will be awarded L$100,000, and the second winner will also be awarded L$50,000.
The program is funded by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).
Naymote Partners for Democratic Development appreciates the support to conduct this innovative and creative project, which the institution believes will enhance college/university students’ understanding of national policy issues, help them identify, discuss, think and critically analyze for the betterment of the country; the institution hopes this project could be held across the 15 counties to provide more opportunities for community colleges to get involved and lead.