I had thought for a few days on the best title to give to this writing. What was the perfect way to pass this message. And then it came and I couldn’t think of a better way to put it. Lack in Abundance is an irony and it is the story of my beloved country Nigeria.
It is not about what we have but more about what we don’t. A country blessed with everything but yet having nothing. We are blessed with every kind of resource but for one. One of the best weather conditions for a vibrant agricultural sector with the ability to feed the world but yet we beg for crumbs. An abundance of natural and mineral resources enough to be a world economic power and yet we struggle to maintain a third world status. However, we lack the required leadership and management skills to utilize our haves for our benefits.
Let’s take a very good look at the demographics of the country as we look at another area where we lack in abundance. According to the 2014 statistics, the population of Nigeria is 180 million. Out of this 180 million, we have about 70% youths (18 – 50) and less than 5% of elders (65 – above). A quick question here is: what are youths known for? I will not be wrong if I say their strength. It will also not be out of place to say we possess some of the most vibrant youths in the world with a lot of strong passion for whatever we do. However, one thing is seriously lacking. Encouragement from our leaders. This has turned our potentially vibrant country to a ghost of itself. Close your eyes and imagine 100 million youths actively employed in a profitable way and imagine how great the host country can be. If each youth earned about 20 thousand naira monthly and pays 500 naira as tax, that gives the government 50 billion monthly and 600 billion yearly in that part of IGR. But yet we are lacking in the midst of abundance of everything.
Hunger in the midst of food and thirst in the midst of water. These are clear results of a lack of vision. We are blind to the realities of our environment. We are unable to see what we have so we can’t use it and in turn are unable to benefit. Despite all, something brings us together than the fact that we come from the same country. Our sincere love for our country is made known in our prayers and curses, our fights for the unity and breakup and in the love and hatred shown for the government.
Some of us hate our country so much and will only pray for it to breakup or wish for a revolution. Some even wish for a re-colonization forgetting the fact that neo-colonization is currently in effect. However, in the midst of this hatred and non-belief is a very tiny wish everything worked out. We still hope we made it out of all these problems together as a country but are continually separated from the idea by the lack of progress being made on the Nigerian project. This has pushed us to run into our shells like snails; seeking protection and support from our immediate environment. This way we have ended up putting the known rather than the best on the job and as a result we still are unable to have a glimpse of the results we so much desire.
It is time to take matters into our hands, we the youths must stand up to be counted. We must make our voices heard as a nation. We must request for a government of the youths, for the youths and by the youths. Our strength is our numbers and our glory is in our strength. We have the strength and the numbers to turn this nation around and we will if we stay together and speak with one voice. If we decide to stand out first by being good citizens, we can build a good society and in turn produce good leaders and in turn generations after us will enjoy the abundance of the land. We’ve got to make a stand to be the change and live the change. Let us give it our final push until it works out.
Good leadership is one of the resources we are deficient of and the most important of it all. We have courted the south and made friends with the north but have had our hearts broken both times. It is time to put away all sentiments and vote based on merits. We need to push beyond our obvious boundaries and vote for the person based on who he is and not where he’s from. We have done this before during the SDP/NRC elections and can still do it again. With all due respects to our wonderful parents, one thing they failed in is making us more Nigerians than Hausa or Igbo or Yoruba or Ijaw or Itsekiri or Tiv etc. We mustn’t do the same to our kids as we would have failed them too.
Late next year will see the resumption of political activities for the 2019 elections. Let us choose wisely and based on merits. If that politician who has not done anything notable comes calling with a bag of rice, please ask him: WHO YOU EPP???
One thing to remember is our leaders are not imported but a product of the society, and the only way to produce good reliable leaders is to have a good society. A good society is made up of good citizens. If all Nigerian youths determine to be good citizens, our country will have a 70% chance of having good leadership. Yeah, I know it is not that simple. Actually it is and we can make it happen. You and me.
Join the movement today. Together we are formidable. It is time to live in abundance and make our country great again.
Watch out for a few ideas on how we can utilize our haves towards achieving our have-nots in my next writing.
Please feel free to share and pass the message around.
A Passionate Nigerian.