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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

The Roles Of Youths In The Nigerian Project; How Ready Are We? – By Igbalajobi Olumuyiwa Ayokunle John Jr.



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There is no doubt, almost all Nigerians want imminent and practical change beyond daily promises from respective governments. However, the mood for change is evident from small villages to big cities where poverty, disease, crime rate, lack of social infrastructure and most significantly the hopeless reality for millions of Nigerians. Today, the country seems to be a shadow of its glorious past where recruiters from governmental establishments transverse university campuses in search of prospective employees, even before they graduate. Nevertheless, the story is different; as youths, even those who have reached the highest academic echelon are jobless and in turn struggle for menial jobs for survival. We need to transform our virtual ideas into sustainable reality. Our problems in Nigeria will not be solved by secession; nor by waving spears and arrows in form of words during elections. Nigerian citizens at all social strata need to embrace the humanity of one another, the spirit of “Live and let live”; the true essence of egalitarianism. Our teething troubles can be resolved through non-violence, but persuasive discussions, objective engagement, and sustainable diplomacy. Firstly, we understand that the youths are the period between childhood and adulthood. Secondly, the nation is a country considered as a group of people living in a certain territory under one Government. Thirdly, we also have to know the “project” which means not brickwork constructed, instead the development of the nation, the future of our noble and great country filled with potentials, capable of being the best in the world. The vision of our country lies in the hands of the youths. They are filled with tremendous and towering ambitions. It will be a great depletion of human resources if these youths are continually denied the opportunity to exercise their talent. Although, the question is are we truly ready for selfless leadership as youths? This beautiful bride called Nigeria needs promising youths saddled with great ideas and capacity in order for her soil to become a brighter one. The primary role of young people is to get a good education in order to become better citizens of tomorrow. They need to learn skills to do the job that their country’s economy needs. They also need to know how to read, write, think, understand, analyses, and discuss the issues their country faces. The entire success of the nation depends on the youths. However, in order for continuous success to take place; it is the Government’s responsibility to provide the youth with proper facilities for getting equipped with the knowledge of the modern era. Any Government depriving youths of these basic and natural needs should be held responsible. Any government that cannot guarantee meaningful education facilities and incentives for learning is accountable for a country’s downfall. Youth is the spring of life. It is the age of discovery and dreams. They have the power to transform the nation into a better place. They also have the ability to lead their fellow citizens into the right direction. Youths are fighters. They fight for an identity in society, equality, the homeless, bullying, unemployment, exploitation, poverty and other problems which the world faces today. All of them hope for a world full of opportunities, so great minds can conquer them and become better individuals. They need good morals and values to handle conflicts in a positive way. We have aspiring doctors, entrepreneurs, scientists, and who knows; maybe the next president.  Illiteracy is a major around the world. About ninety percent of the people who reside in villages are illiterate. The reason is their utter ignorance and lack of initiative to lead them in the right direction. Someone has to pull them up. Here also, the young people can be of immense help. The role of the youth is the most important in today’s time. They have underplayed themselves in the field of the politics. Youth are strong forces in social movements.

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Youths are problem solvers. Our nations need them to resolve most of our problems. The nation is facing many problems, and I believe that the youths are capable of solving them. Racism is an ongoing issue around the world. Individuals are fighting against each other because of the complexion of their skin and the texture of their hair. Religion is another issue, the youths can convince their fellow man to live in peace and love. All of us are one and we should not allow these little differences to push us away from each other. There also a lot of crime taking place. Abusive husbands are killing women. People’s homes, businesses, are being broken into. All of this crime and violence needs to stop. The youth once more has the ability to bring about a change in their country. Youths seems to have the ability to face any challenges and problems. They have a positive influence on their fellow young people. They are able to teach them the positive things in life. The ones whom are destroying their future, they tend to listen to their fellow youths. They will make them understand the importance of a good education. The wise youths that we have out there should be taken into consideration. Some of them, though educated are unemployed. They should be given an opportunity to expose their intelligence to the world and make themselves into someone. Some organizations and other firm should assist the youths; so they can make our land a great and educated one.

They will make a huge difference in society and the entire world.The youths are our life and nation. They will make our country proud. The country will be recognized. The youths just need the support from their fellow citizens and they will perform their duties. The role of the youth in the nation building is crucial. They are problem solvers, have a positive influence on other young people and the nation, and are extremely ambitious. They have the ability to create an identity for themselves and move the nation forward. However, they will not be able to do this without the support of their Government and fellow youths. So the youths can make their beautiful land flourish and shine in success.

Apparently the genesis of Youths deteriorations in ideas and characters aren’t also far from social media networks which does more harm than good. Youths abused one another all because of divergent political views and ideologies not reckoning with the fact that the Nigerian project must be guided, nourished and protected from agents of discord. The continuous recycling of leadership mantle among the aged circle is not only displeasing but also a marker to the fact that Nigerian youth seems to be premature for such task. For the main reason that the poverty level of our own country rises daily, the gap between the rich and the poor increasing in multiple fold, there still exist symptoms of greatness via a unique/individualistic ideas/innovation in each Nigeria youth.

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Furthermore, the issue of corruption in our country is worrisome and endemic. Recently a rights group condemned Nigeria’s President and Attorney general for dropping corruption charges against the son of the former military dictator accused of helping to launder millions in stolen funds. The government last month withdrew charges against Mohammad Abacha in a deal that saw $227 million looted by Gen. Sani Abacha and held in Liechtenstein returned to Nigeria. The money had been held up for years by Abacha family lawsuits. The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project said it has filed suit arguing the constitution requires Nigeria’s leaders to “ensure diligent and effective prosecution” of corruption suspects. President Goodluck Jonathan is accused of pardoning other corrupt politicians despite promises to fight endemic corruption. Mohammad Abacha is wanted in the United States for allegedly laundering $458 million frozen in February. We also have countless numbers of Past Governors and Political office holders on corruption trials while at the same time they walk freely and even oppress the common men on the street. We all know about it, I am drawing your attention to it as an instance. There is hardly anyone who is not affected by it. The menace of corruption is very much detrimental to our national character and has been the root cause of many a social and moral decadence. The intellectuals and the leaders are all well aware of it. But have we ever tried to come out of this mire? Youths could have been prepared and exhorted to rise against it, but we have never tried to do so. Consequently, the new generation is also bogged down. To avoid further deterioration of the situation, it is necessary to guide the youths in right direction, so that they may engage themselves with the task of completing the unfinished process of upliftment of their nation. The responsibility of preparing the background and creating a congenial environment in this respect lies with the intellectuals and the leaders of society.

Let us give a helping hand to the young generation, uplift their morale to enable them to revive the national character and to carry on the process of national upliftment. It is also our duty and if we are indifferently disposed to it, we are certainly disregarding our duty towards the society and nation. Under such circumstances, we have no right to be regarded as intellectuals or leading persons or society, have we?

Igbalajobi Olumuyiwa Ayokunle John Jr.

Postgraduate Student 

Department of Microbiology and Biotechnology,

Daejeon University

Daejeon,South Korea


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