Youths have low esteem for political parties: Survey
Reported by: UNB Connect
Reported on: Aug 09, 2012 09:42 pm
Reported in: National
Dhaka, Aug 9 (UNB) – Most of the country’s youths who constitute 65 percent of the total population have a low esteem for political parties as only 30 percent of them are loyal to any single party, says a survey.The survey, titled ‘Bangladesh Youth Survey (BYS) 2011’ conducted by Institute of Governance Studies of Brac University with assistance from UNDP, says about 70 percent of eligible voters among the youth are yet to be enrolled in the national voters list.The primary findings of the survey were revealed at a dissemination workshop at Brac Inn Centre here on Thursday. Addressing the workshop, survey team leader Elvira Graner said, “Only two percent of the youth surveyed were found to be affiliated to politics, and only 30 percent of the youth always vote for the same political party.”The statistics reveal that the proportion of swing voters among the youth is very significant, she added.Referring to the primary findings of the survey, Brac University registrar Ishfaq Ilahi Choudhuri said it is interesting to know “A large portion of the youth believe in military government than elected political parties.”“The youth find the police and the judiciary to be the most corrupt department of the government,” he added.Addressing the programme as the chief guest, Campaign for Popular Education (Campe) executive director Rasheda K Chowdhury said, “The huge number of swing voters among the youth indicates that they don’t have any faith on the political parties.”The faith needs to be refurbished for the sake of democracy, she stressed.Rasheda K Chowdhury, also a former caretaker government adviser, also pointed out that the country’s history is rich with the incidents of the youth playing a major role in political movements – from the Swadeshi movement against the British rule to the anti-autocratic movement of recent times.Rasheda, however, sounded optimistic about the potential of the youth that constitute, according to the BYS 2011, 65 percent of the total population.“The nation has the boon of a demographic dividend that is 60 percent of the population in the country is below the age of 25.” The economic growth of the country is and will continue to be largely indebted to the young population as they constitute the main force for sectors such as RMG, SME and agriculture, she said.About youth employment, the BYS 2011 says only 27 percent of the youth have paid work in the country.The survey says only 7 percent of the youth have vocational and technical training, while 10 percent have computer and internet access.Speaking at the programme, Swiss Ambassador to Bangladesh Urs Herren stressed the capacity building of the youth through vocational technical training, particularly on developing computer and internet skills. “There’s a very big digital gap…most of the young people are not connected with the internet,” he said.UNDP country director Stefan Priesner said Bangladesh’s aim to become a middle-income country by 2020 largely depends on the contribution of its population between 15 and 30 years of age.
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