Jacques Nyembe, Theresia Blanz, Leo Wamwanduka, Kehinde Fawumi and Jerome Kpan joined the "United Nations Forum on Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law" in Geneva. They participated at its first session, "Widening the Democratic Space: The role of youths in public decision-making" from 21 to 22 November 2016. The meeting was the first of its kind, following a resolution 28/14, adopted on 26 of March 2015, that the Human Rights Council is to establish a forum on human rights, democracy and rule of law. The purpose of the Forum would be “to provide a platform for promoting dialogue and cooperation on issues pertaining to the relationship between these areas” and to “identify and analyze best practices, challenges and opportunities for States in their efforts to secure respect for human rights, democracy and the rule of law”.
Four main themes were explored with the aim of finding suitable recommendations which the UN could adopt to widen the democratic space and improve youth participation in public decision-making:
- Creating an enabling environment for the effective participation of youths in public decision-making
- From formal to transformative participation
- Participation of youth in sustainable development and human rights protection in specific contexts
- Moving the global youth agenda forward: the role of youth in shaping the agenda of the United Nations and regional organisations