“Our youth are not failing the system; the system is failing our youth. Ironically, the very youth who are being treated the worst are the young people who are going to lead us out of this nightmare.” —Rachel Jackson.
I was listening to a respected elder the other day and he vividly painted how things were back then in Nigeria. Education was almost free, if not free, there were free meals, employment opportunities with incentives and good pay, even for secondary school graduates. Ironically, those who enjoyed the past are, at present, deciders of what happens to the present. And their decision is the opposite of what they enjoyed. No wonder some are advocating for a future that looks like the past, for indeed, the past was great.
Now that the generation that had it all back has failed us, what's next?
The youth of today feeling forsaken in decision making got lost in the democratization process. Many took the back seat, doing the dirty jobs! But there are also right thinking young Nigerians. On their shoulders rest our only hope of survival! These few have always thought, spoken and taken actions to get the Nigerian Youth into MEANINGFUL participation in the politics of our great country.
So, as a youth, how do you disrespect the status-quo? I found Ifeanyi Aniagoh's outline of the "A-B-C" to taking charge as young Nigerians containing answers.
1. Increased engagement with the Legislature to amend the Constitution to takeout the age barrier;
2. Better electoral process and behaviour to get the sincere leaders in place... In this we must stop being induced to support a candidate!;
3. Self assessment... Look inwards and change yourself. Understand your age... At 35 years, we are already old!;
4. Bottom up approach... It's you and only you! Do something yourself to overcome every challenge. Like in the case of herdsmen menace, I no longer eat meat... What have you done;
5. Create alternatives, build a niche for yourself... If you can't be a youth or woman leader, develop an office like Social Media and be the leader... Social Media leader!;
6. Change what interests you... Your hobbies, way of life, challenger and role models should represent the right ideals;
7. Be prepared for takeover; if you are not, then get tutored immediately after takeover;
8. Know that "The Inside is never as perceived outside"... Don't pull down a leader if you can't pull up another or put up a better leadership!
9. Apply PAVE approach... Be Patriotic! Advocate for good governance! Volunteer frequently and Empower your being!
10. Ultimately, take sincere leaders as your mentors and role models.
Since we have a system destined to fail us, fighting the system is our only option. Governance does not respects age, it is a wheel that can be driven by anyone.
“The secret message communicated to most young people today by the society around them is that they are not needed, that the society will run itself quite nicely until they — at some distant point in the future — will take over the reigns. Yet the fact is that the society is not running itself nicely… because the rest of us need all the energy, brains, imagination and talent that young people can bring to bear down on our difficulties. For society to attempt to solve it’s desperate problems without the full participation of even very young people is imbecile.” — Alvin Toffler.
Adeyemi A. Adeola
Published by Adeyemi A. Adeola