Recently, I came across a study that proved that 70% of Nigerians (150 million) are youths under the age of 30yrs, I had mixed feelings because it was shocking to me that we as a nation possess such amount of raw energy, creativity and innovation yet we are not tapping fully into its full potential.
I would therefore like to make a case today that ”yes it’s true that children/youths are the messages we send to the future but what is also true is that they are the future we send to the future”.
It’s true that a trip round a typical Lagos street is definitely an encounter with homeless and jobless youths in bus stops and garages, some stark naked, some passing the night on railway lines, some involving themselves in the use of Marijuana, and most interestingly some enjoying the ”fun” of the lotto game(Baba Ijebu),sad much you would say. But what is also true is that embedded in these ones are talents,aspirations,energy and passion yearning to be directed to the right use but the problem is there’s a deafening silence across board on this issue.
It was Pat Utomi that said”We are not going to be able to transform the society until we can create new opportunities for people”that’s why i’ve always advocated that the opposite of poverty is not wealth but justice”.
French military and Political leader Napoleon Bonaparte whose action shaped European politics in the early 19th century once said”I am not afraid of all the ministers,prime ministers and leaders of nations who are my contemporary for i know what they will be,but i am extremely afraid of you the youth because i don’t know what you will be by the turn of the day”.
Therefore i posit that youth are the harbingers and drivers of development in any given society,largely because the state of being young is associated with vigour and freshness.The average hawker,tout and orphan on the street is not all mad and hopeless.he himself is not pleased with what he is,deep down in his heart he wishes for a miracle to take him off the street and engage himself meaningfully.
Thomas chandler Halliburton said”the happiness of every country depends upon the character of its people rather than the form of its government.Yes the government has the responsibility of providing the right conditions and opportunities for employment but we must also learn to deploy ourselves.
Therefore my simple call to all privileged youths spread across the length and breath of this nation is that we stand out as a ”voice”,to speak for the hopeless,to stand for social justice cos social justice is that natural conscience that tells us that we can’t judge our lives by our technology,entertainment and social networking but by the infusion of compassion,humanity and justice.
I close my case by saying that as long as you belong the this great generation of youths in this nation you have a voice and your voice truly counts.Remember what Paul the apostle said”When i was child i spake like a child ,i understood as a child,i thought as a child but when i became a man,i put away childish things,the reason for this statement is simple,Peter explains it better when he said We have a more sure word of prophecy that the day star shall rise in our hearts.
A day star is what you are.shine bright,stand for something,influence your environment,restore order to chaos,be a change agent and shine bright like a diamond