JOHOR BARU: The Johor government changed its stand and made a “U-turn” Tuesday (July 9) on lowering the age cap for youth from 40 years to 30.

This comes after the state government announced Monday (July 8) that it would maintain the age cap at 40.

State Youth, Sports, Entrepreneurship Development and Cooperatives Committee chairman Sheikh Umar Bagharib Ali (pic) said the decision was made during the exco meeting Tuesday chaired by Mentri Besar Datuk Dr Sahruddin Jamal.

He said that the issue was raised and discussed after feedback and anxiety from the grassroots were brought up.

“The amendments to the Youth Societies and Youth Development 2007 (Act 668) were decided by the Federal Cabinet and consensus in Pakatan Harapan’s presidential council.

“The state government welcomes the change of definition of youth to between 15 and 30 years old, in line with the decision,” he added.

Sheikh Umar, who is also the new state DAP youth chief, said this in a statement here.

He added that the state government realised that the changes involving Act 668 would affect the whole youth movement, including the Registrar of Youth Associations (ROY).

“I will like to stress that this amendment is to the Act itself, which involves legal issues.

“It is not just a policy like the National Youth Policy launched by former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak in 2015,” he said.

Sheikh Umar added that the state government would help facilitate the process.

He said that according to Youth and Sports Minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, the gazetted date would be Dec 31, 2021.

“This two-year period would be enough for the state government to check and widen our engagement to help grassroots understand the issues,” he said.

On Monday (July 8), Johor had announced it would maintain its categorisation of youth as those between 15 and 40 years old for its polices despite the Federal Government’s move to lower the age limit to 30.

Johor, at the time, joined Selangor and Sarawak in maintaining the youth age cap at 40.

Dr Sahruddin said 40 was a strategic age, as those nearing the upper limit would have built up leadership qualities and the ability to examine current issues.

He added that Johor respected Putrajaya’s views and the amendment to the Act that Parliament passed last week to redefine youth as those below 30 but would not adopt it.

Related story:

MCA: Federal says youths are those below 30, Johor says 40 – why?