From A Youth’s Telescope: A Recipe For Change In Bauchi By Abdulkadir S. Abdulkadir
Change has been on the mind of every Nigerian and especially the good people of Bauchi who dared all odds expressing their hunger for change by the ballot.
The wake of the agitation in Bauchi highlights the deep hearted desire of the people of Yakubu for improvement on the tables.
Reading Buhari’s body language when he spoke at Chatam house; it is no-brainer to pick the message that the current government must address the plight of the youths constituency, and it’s survival depends largely on meeting at least to the bearest average the expectations of the electorate.
His excellency Barrister M A Abubakar has got a onerous task of setting up the plate if he wants to be remembered as the messiah of the change we want.
Your execellency sir, this piece intends to voice out the aspirations of the youth. The biggest constituency in the state with no boundary along regional, political, tribal or religious lines. It is widely accepted that an Idle mind is a devil’s workshop. And to defeat the devil from creating as much workshops is to engage the teeming youths who roam the street every day without jobs or hope for earning a living.
Your execellency Sir, it may surprise you to know that with the army of employment embark upon by your predecessor, significant number of young graduate are still in the league of youths hopelessly roaming the streets without jobs. We do not expect you to add a stroke that will break the camels back as we are aware that the state civil service is at its elastic end.
What we expect from this administration is programs that will put the young graduates into entrepreneurship especially in agriculture that will create other jobs as well as add to wealth creation and revenue generation of the state. With sincerity of purpose and a well thoughtful yet transparent project that can provide the youths with business grants and technical assistance, the state will boost her local agricultural potential while still reducing unemployment and poverty. All that may be required of the youth is to present and defend a decent business plan with expected jobs and revenue it can generate on short and long term basis.
Women empowerment is assumed to be the most effective channel of wealth creation. As such, women can be allowed an open business scope to allow them invest in other creative businesses such as fashion designing, bakery, event management, catering, pottery etc. With access to financial grant and capacity building workshops in such creative businesses, a lot can be achieved.
Bauchi is already a mecca of sports with record of best sporting infrastructure in the North-East and hosting Africa and the world in number of occasions. Your Execellency Sir, is one thing to have the facility to host the World Olympics and another thing to provide our creative sports enthusiasts who are good in their various games but lack the necessary support and facility to explore the talent into professionalism. If the state can go beyond the traditional funding of state owned club and hosting tournaments and venture into creation of Sports Centres or Games Villages across the state with facilities for all major indoor and outdoor sports the sky can only be a starting point for these creative individuals. So far, the state Games Village in Bauchi town can only boast of one standard football field.
Not all of us were opportune to have post secondary school certificates, some were not even chanced to go to school, yet, they choose to contribute their energies and time in securing our communities. To their credit your execellency is the protection our metropolis is enjoying against the dreaded thugs (Yan Sara Suka) who at a time made some places a no-go area within the city capital. The same youth that protected us from the thugs chose not to be partisan and provided us with security during the just concluded general elections thus the peaceful conduct and least reports of Ballot Box snatching from Bauchi state. Training them on a low profile and providing them with tools such as communication gadgets, flash lights etc while giving them some allowances can help in provision and expansion of the community policing. We need them as much as they need support.
As our great party forms the government at the centre, a lot of reforms are coming up that will give room for massive industrialisation which in turn will require the services of numerous jobless graduates. The graduate unemployment rates is about 70% and counting hence making employment into professional industries very competitive. In line with that, it will be important if the state is able to come up with a merit post graduate scholarship scheme that will encourage and support the youths to pursue additional qualifications so as to meet up with the challenges of the competitive labour market. Special consideration can be given to women even at undergraduate level to earn degrees in education, medical sciences, basic science and technology with bond agreement to serve the state upon completion.
For too long the youth have answered the leaders of tomorrow but we wonder if tomorrow will ever be. It will be of great benefit if your administration consider the appointment of youth especially in sectors that directly affect them. The state need their youthful exuberance and creative minds as they also need the experience and dexterity of the aged to work in moving the state to greatness.
The list can go on and on but as you stride to make Bauchi great, we will keep requesting and asking for more till we get the state of our dream.
Barka da Sallah and wish you a fruitful tenure.
Abdulkadir S. Abdulkadir is an advocate of Social Justice wrote from Bauchi, Nigeria. Twitter @abdul003