Nigerian Youths, Are We Really Prepared for 2015? By David Adeniyi
Going through Uncle Dele Momodu’s Saturday column “The Pendulum” on THISDAY edition of September 1st, 2012 where he wrote about how Nigerian youths can put to meaningful use their large followers on twitter and other social networks to cause a social change in our polity.
I feel ashamed each time I see Profs. Wole Soyinka, Ben Nwabueze, Tunji Braithwaite, a fiery Pastor Tunde Bakare and other notable elders who should be resting their nerves and enjoying some good time with their grandchildren, still leading protests and demonstrations against tyranny while ‘we’ younger elements look the other way. Heck, these men have paid their dues and should be resting and giving useful pieces of advice now and posterity will never forget them.
Then, I came into a conclusion that the Nigerian youths have not done enough to salvage our dear country from impending socio-economic doom. It is very disturbing to know that what most youths do nowadays on the social media is full of irrelevances. Many are concerned about the number of followers they have on their twitter handles, as though it is another way of showing “class”. I ask myself; of what use is the numerous followers on twitter that you cannot influence for social change? Of what benefits is the hundreds of friends you keep on your facebook accounts, BBM, Whatsapp, 2go,Linkedin,etc that you cannot share thoughts and ideas that will give us the “dream country” we strive for?
Another election year in 2015 is gradually crawling in again, political bigwigs are already strategising on how to impose their candidates on the economically battered Nigerians again. While to the politically naïve 2015 looks a long while away, but to the politically discerning minds, 2015 is just around the corner. I doubt if Nigerian youths had any plans or strategies on ground to thwart their evil agenda. People have argued that Nigerians are dormant. If I may ask; Are we? No, that was then, not now.
When it is elections time, politicians will remember the youths and try to cajole with all manners of fake promises. They either use some of us to cause mayhem or rig during elections and dump us afterwards like juicy orange that have been sucked dry and thrown away.
Many of us are not helping the matter either because we don’t demand enough! Some of us don’t read any more. All we do is to tweet from morning till midnight on irrelevant issues without engaging ourselves in serious academic exercise. Readers are leaders.
I am often impressed with the exploits we are making at our own different levels. I feel proud with what the likes of Japhet Omojuwa, Tolu Ogunlesi, Ekeeke, Linda Ikeji, Abubakar Usman, Ayo Sogunro and other politically savvy young Nigerians are doing with their tweeps on twitter. Sorry, if I didn’t mention your name. It’s unintentional. I am equally challenged with various financial donations that people of goodwill have made and are still making to help the needy and those with health related issues like SaveFunmi, Saveidiaghon, SaveMeka, etc.
To me, this is high time we needed to build a virile nation of our own. This is the time to weed out ethnic and religious trends of thoughts and seek out the man and woman of vision, passion, mission and great ideas to come on board to clean up our rottened system. Allowing the dregs of the society to continue to hold on to power is synonymous to casting pearls before swine.
My fellow Nigerian youths, we need to decide what kind of country we want to live in. If all we do is to complain and blame, then we will be in for another four years of political slavery. If you want a country of shared opportunities and shared responsibilities, then this is the time to build a mass movement of Nigerian youths with vision, determination and drive to vote out the nilly-willy at the corridors of power and make a difference. If you want a country where the youths unemployment will be reduced to its barest minimum. Then, the choice is ours!
I understand we may not have moneybags to foot the bills of campaign, but we have numerical strength to cast our votes for the right candidates. Your vote is your power.
If we want a country that we truly desire for change and economic prosperity that we have been striving for, then this is the time to mobilise ourselves and form a synergy of determined and focused young people that want to leave their country better than how we met it.
I love to see a country where the youths that constitute about 70% of the total Nigerian population will bring that change that we yearn for. If we don’t do it now, then when are we waiting for? No time again, it is now!
I believe we can concretise our ideas about the social change we desire in a coherent manner to produce desirable results. Once bitten, they say, twice shy.
This is the high time we rose up together to make a difference.
I believe we can do it. Yes, we can!
God Bless You- God Bless Nigeria.
David Adeniyi is the CEO of the Unique Stars International, Lagos.
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