Nigeria: Where Not To Be A Youth ~ By Joe Onwukeme
Nigeria is gradually becoming a theatre of the absurd where nothing comes as a surprise anymore.
Nigeria as a nation is becoming reputed as a place where no one wants to take up responsibility for his or her actions.
And in all these, Nigerian youths are now soft targets for the abysmal failures of our leaders.
The Nigerian youths have been reduced to subject of public ridicule for no just crime of theirs apart from the fact they came from a Nation that does not believe in her teeming younger generation.
Nigerian youths have taken in good fate, the fact that the institutions that invested so much on our leaders have been left in ruins by same leaders controlling the affairs of the nation.
When policies of the government goes wrong, the people it affects most are the youths. In the areas of employment or an enabling environment for small and medium enterprises, we all know Nigerian youths have not benefitted so much.
Everywhere you go, Nigerian youths have become soft targets for everything wrong. Nigerian youths are now soft targets to our security agencies.
What qualifies one as an internet fraudster is the kind and quality of phone one has.
In their infantile thinking, an average youth can’t afford the latest gadgets without engaging in one form of crime or the other.
President Buhari has shifted the blame from our past corrupt leaders to the Nigerian youths.
President Buhari at a business conference last week Wednesday, unapologetically referred to a lot of Nigerian youths as those who do nothing but want everything for free.
The question is, what has an average Nigerian youth gotten for free in Nigeria? Or to put it mildly, what has the government of President Buhari done to better the lives of Nigerian youths?
On individual basis, how many companies of President Buhari are Nigerian youths gainfully employed?
President Buhari, with all due respect, has no moral justification to refer to Nigerian youths as lazy. Even though president Buhari’s media team have come up with their defense, he was not referring to all but “a lot of” Nigerian youths.
Before one comes out to refer another as being lazy, one would have used his achievements as an example.
President Buhari and many of our leaders are just examples of what leaders shouldn’t be, the same institution that made them what they are today is same institution they have bastardized and left in ruins.
In a these, Nigerian youth have kept the struggle, working tirelessly to ensure there are roof over their heads and food on the table.
Instead finding solutions to Nigeria’s hydra headed problems, Nigerian youths have become subject of public ridicule by the president in far away London.
As Nigerian youths await president Buhari to mention his achievements through hard work and enterprise, all over the world, Nigerian youth are conquering the world with innovations.
In the area of politics, they are holding elective positions in Europe and America, others are doing perfectly well in their chosen careers. Breaking records and achieving great feats.
The story is not different back home.
In entrepreneurship, small and medium enterprises, through individual struggles with little or no support from government, Nigerian youths have continued to excel in their chosen enterprise.
Their exploits in markets, shops, malls and shopping plazas across the country will convince you.
Some of these business men are not graduates but they have graduates under their employ.
In China, Dubai and other commercial centres of the world, Nigerian youths top the list of foreigners who come to those countries to buy goods and other services. Not forgetting their exploits in the areas of science, technology and ICT.
There may be lazy Nigerian youths but they are infinitesimal compared to those who are gainfully engaged with little or no help from government.
If employment were to be the exclusive reserve of the government, Boko Haram and other forms of insecurity we are facing as a nation would have been a child’s play.
It’s obvious Nigeria has become a nation where not to be a youth, if the Nation cannot help her teeming youths, they should allow us carry our cross in good fate.
You can’t deny one food and also blame the person for going to look for food elsewhere.
Joe Onwukeme, Owerri, Imo State; @unjoerated; Unjoeratedjoe@gmail.com