You definitely must have been told that the youths are the leaders of tomorrow. Now, that’s a scam. Believe it at your own peril. Fact is, there is no place for most Nigerian youths in the political leadership of the Country both now and in the future. They are only useful as Social media defenders or whatsapp group admins!
Nigerian youths have remained so gullible. The privileged members of the political class, many of whom were in their 30s when they got the opportunity to serve the Country in various positions of leadership, now deny todays’ youth the very same opportunity they had.
The forerunners who rose up to demand our freedom from the colonial masters were in their prime; they were young adults! In their time, many were barely in their 40s or 50s and they presided over the affairs of regions, ministries, agencies, parastatals and even over the affairs of the entire Country as Heads of State!
Today, the Nigerian youth is only good enough to be members of Buhari Media Centre, Whatsapp group admins and Social media defenders for politicians and government officials. Shame! How low can we get? For how long more will we continued to be scammed?
It is a historical fact for instance, that Yakubu Gowon became Nigeria’s Head of State at age 31+. General Yakubu Gowon, born on October 19, 1934 became Nigerias’ military head of state on August1, 1966 after the assassination of Major General Aguiyi-Ironsi.
Others who have had the privilege of leading the Country at the highest level as youths and young adults include:
- General Murtala Muhammed, born November 8, 1938. Served as a federal commissioner (Minister) under General Gowon and became head of state on July 29, 1975 at the age of 37. Murtala was assassinated on February 3, 1976, 10 days after he created seven new states – Bauchi, Benue, Borno, Imo, Niger, Ogun and Ondo
- General Olusegun Obasanjo, he was 39years old when the Supreme military council appointed him as the head of state on February 13, 1976. Obasanjo was born on May 5, 1937.
- Major General Aguiyi-Ironsi, he was Nigeria’s 2nd President. Born on March 3, 1924. Aguiyi-Ironsi was only 42years when he became head of state after Azikiwe was overthrown in 1966.
Wait for this, the newly appointed Chief of Staff to President Mohammadu Buhari, Professor Ibrahim Gambari was appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs at the age of 39! Now, at 76 he makes a grand return as Chief of Staff. We even have an Ambassador who is in his 80s so what really is 76?
Even our current President, Mohammadu Buhari, became head of state was just 41years when he became head of state on December 31, 1983!
So, President Buhari himself haven climbed to the top as a youth in various capacities; he was a Federal commissioner (Minister of Petroleum-BIG Portfolio o!) and also the military administrator of the Gongola (the entire current North East states) and then head of state- all these positions as a YOUTH, he unfortunately does not believe that we the youths of Nigeria deserve any place in the political leadership of Nigeria.
He has demonstrated this over and over, times without number in his cabinet and membership of government parastatal appointments. He is either appointing DEAD people or his age mates!
The future of Nigeria is in the past NOT in the youths. This view though a gloomy one is a sad reality.
A situation where those who are leading Nigeria into the future are still living in the stone age, using analogue when their contemporaries world over are in the internet super high way leveraging the huge benefits and potential of digital in delivering credible, efficient and effective leadership to their citizens.
The appendage Digital Economy recently added to the tile of the Minister of Communication is not nothing but an appendage. Nothing on ground to show that even the minister understand or appreciate the tremendous power of digital. I think they just think that digital is facebook, whatsapp, twitter, etc!
But as youths we too have not tried at all. We seem satisfied and comfortable to be labelled as “lazy Nigerian youth” and to be named as members of campaign committee for some old politician who has since lost touch with today’s trends and realities.
We are their Social media defender- we are doing well indeed! Our mates are leading their nations into the future of things! Check France, Australia, Finland, etc.
Thank God for the Buhari Signs Not Too Young To Run Bill, as youths we can rise up, aspire to lead our Country at the highest level of governance both at the State and Federal levels.
It is not going to be a walk in the park as we probably found out in 2019. But it is a good place to start. And yes, we can do it, we can take over the reins of governance, we can provide good and quality leadership that will advance us as a nation while providing the good life for the generality of our people regardless of tribe, ethnic and or gender consideration.
We can build the NATION that generations coming after us will be proud to live in instead of seeking “greener pasture” elsewhere. The Country of our DREAMS- It is possible.