Benguela Current Youth Summit kicks off

06 Jun 2013 12:30
SWAKOPMUND, 06 JUN (NAMPA) ? About 30 youths are gathered at Swakopmund in the Erongo Region for a summit aimed at deliberating on issues related to the improvement of the governance of the Benguela Current Large Marine Ecosystem.
The three-day summit is being attended by youth from Angola, South Africa and Namibia.
It is being held just before World Ocean Day, which is observed annually on 08 June.
?The future is in your hands,? Erongo Regional Governor Cleophas Mutjavikua said in a speech read on his behalf by his Special Advisor, Bobby Kandjala whilst opening the first-ever Benguela Current Youth Summit.
He told the youth that their input must be valued and considered in the governing of the ocean.
?Our ecosystem needs to be preserved so that this generation does not foreclose the next generation from benefiting from goods and services derived from the marine and coastal ecosystems,? he noted.
Mutjavikua then called on the youths to be involved in marine and coastal environmental issues to ensuring that they embark on development, and that they do so in a manner which does not adversely and irreversibly damage the very environment to which they are dependent for a livelihood.
Meanwhile, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, Ulitala Hiveluah said the future of ocean conservation is in the hands of everybody, particularly the youth.
The youth have become more outspoken about their visions for sustainable development and to explain their expectations of political leaders, she said.
?The youth summit is such a platform,? Hiveluah indicated.
In March this year, Namibia, Angola and South Africa signed the Benguela Current Convention and created the first commission of its kind in the world that works with different sectors and stakeholders to improve the ocean governance of the Benguela Current Large Marine Ecosystem.
About 30 youths are attending the summit, which ends on Saturday.