‘’Arise, O Compatriots, Nigeria’s call obey….’’
Nigeria is rising and all of us have a part to play in bringing about this much desired state of well-being, without any doubt. One of the primary functions of leadership is to inspire, and if there is inspiring leadership to be found anywhere in the country today, many would agree that it is in Lagos state. It is sad however, to hear that there are some who are grumbling seriously against the efforts of the state government at transforming Lagos, and even working hard to undermine them. Such people would rather have us return to the days of street made impassable not by potholes but by traders who have seized them from the public. They argue that by taking back the streets and railway tracks from traders and roadside mechanics, “Fashola” is removing food from their mouths.
Listening to such arguments makes one tend towards despair for this nation, for one then wonders which is the sorrier state to be in: having a leadership which does not care for the people or having a people who are unable to recognise when they are being cared for? Well irrespective of whatever might be the situation let me submit by saying that although ‘’EKO oni’’ (today’s Lagos) still needs quite a reasonable amount of fixing because there are aspects of it which are actually ‘’baje’’ (spoilt) at the moment, it is the hope of all of us (well-meaning and right-thinking Nigerians) that the state of beauty and wellness which we long to see realised in Lagos will be attained sooner rather than later, so that we can then, with our whole hearts and minds, uphold it with our prayers. EKO ko nii baje o !
I pointed out the above from the Lagos situation so as to slowly delve into my brief discuss.
Firstly, let’s imagine a Nigerian election without the participation of the youths, i.e. no youth contested, no youth voted. We would have side-lined over 40 percent of Nigerians and over 70 percent of eligible voters from rightly participating in the elections.
Let’s now imagine a Nigeria that had a majority of youths that will rather do the right thing than otherwise, that will stand up for what is right, not just on social media but venture also into the field of action with the intent to do something differently.
Let’s finally imagine a Lagos state with this kind of youths, or better still a Nigeria, with this kind of youths. I confidently put it to you that, if Nigeria had this kind of youths, even the most influential of the ogas at the top will be forced to rule right or step down for competence to reign.
Listen,they’ve tried to bury us, but they didn’t know we are seeds. But how will this matter if we refuse to utilise all that we’ve grown to become in the betterment of our nation and we just selfishly concentrate on personal dreams and goals forgetting that Nigeria is ours to build. Youths, we have been buried for so long. The time to transform to fruition is now. Have you ever noticed that seeds are not usually so big but they have the capacity to produce very large trees and have beautiful fruits?
You are powerful but really, how did we develop this corporate indomitable, apparently unique Nigerian (Naija) mind-set which cannot but laugh at its own woes? This must be the reason we have been called ‘’the happiest people on earth’’. However, could it not also be the same reason that we continue to be exploited by our leaders, both politically and traditionally? They believe they can get away with anything with us, knowing that ‘’the heavens won’t fall’’. It was Richard Dowden, in his book, Africa: Altered States, ordinary miracles, who made two very insightful statements about the continent. ‘’Africa always has hope’’, and ‘’ African patience allows exploitation and oppression to thrive’’.
Sincerely, I so much love this Naijamind-set and would not wish to trade it for anything else. It constitutes, probably, the most defining trait of our national identity just like that! Laughter, it has also been said, is the best medicine, and God knows we do need some good medicine to face up to the challenges of everyday life in this present world! However, you should not engage in mindless laughter at such a time like this which clearly calls for serious reflection and decisive action because #YouArePowerful.
While you laugh and joke about our peculiar predicament, take a pause, recognise the seriousness of our situation and rouse yourselves to act decisively because #YouArePowerful.
We stand now at the threshold of a golden opportunity to impress upon our leaders that we demand good governance based on justice, equity, accountability, transparency and integrity from them because we know #We and our Choices Are Powerful.
We should expand the current palaver over the unscrupulous act of terror in the nation and make it a launching pad to call for far-reaching and very fundamental changes in the way this country is being governed.
You know why all these things will happen? Yes, you are right! It’s because You and your Choices Are Powerful.
Note that an accumulated right stand is all it will take to help NAIJA STAND.
As for me I have pledged to serve Nigeria with all my strength, I want to see Nigeria grow younger as I grow older. This is my dream and it shall surely come to pass.
You are powerful, what will you do for Nigeria? Think about this!
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