LUSAKA, Zambia, March 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- His Excellency, Mr. Rupiah Banda, President of the Republic of Zambia has spoken ahead of Zambia's Youth Day tomorrow commending young people across the country for their energy and drive and highlighting his commitment to their future.

President Banda urged all Zambians to join him in celebrating the achievements of young people in Zambia reminding them of the vital role of Zambia's youth in the development and prosperity of the nation.

H.E, Mr. Rupiah Banda said: "My government is committed to the education and empowerment of our young people which will help Zambia realise its full potential."

President Banda has put education and youth development at the heart of his government's initiatives and huge steps have already been taken aimed at building tomorrow's Zambia. Under the President more than 12,500 new teachers have been trained, thousands of new classrooms have been constructed and 87 new schools and high schools have been built.

Last year saw 2,000 young Zambians receive training in President Banda's Youth Resource Centres, while the President's Get Ahead Entrepreneurial Training was used by 1,000 young people, as a result nearly 700 of those who attended went on to establish businesses of their own.

Other key developments which support the ambitions of Zambia's young people include the opening of the Olympic Youth Centre with top quality facilities for a wide range of sports, from athletics to weightlifting.

The Government has also continued to invest in the future of Zambia's orphans and vulnerable children by offering them valuable and practical work skills such as agriculture and bricklaying in National Service camps, such as the ones at Kitwe and Chiwoko.

President Banda highlighted that Zambia experienced strong economic growth of nearly 7% in 2010, and that his government wants to take advantage of this economic prosperity to ensure more jobs are created which will lead to more opportunities for young people.

He added: "Training and access to the right kind of jobs is very important to young Zambians and more private sector involvement is required to open up job opportunities so young people can make the successful transition from school to work and play their role in building tomorrow's Zambia."