Opinion / Editorial

The Promise of Change and the Nigerian Youths


By Lasode Damilola

I still can’t believe our country (Nigeria) flowing with milk and honey still continues to crawl at this stage. We are among the highest producer of crude oil in Africa, but without nothing tangible to show for it. 56 years after independence, our leaders still can’t deliver electricity, water, home-refined petroleum products, good refineries, transportation (road, rail, water and air)  and other tangible infrastructural facilities . And yet we are called the “Giant of Africa”. What do you think of the name “Giant of Africa”? Scam I guess… To me I think the name Giant of Africa actually means a “Disgrace to Africa”, big and giant for nothing.

I thought that based on APC popular slogan of Change, that they would be an all-inclusive party, a party that has respect for internal democratic process, a party that has respect for the interest, wishes and aspirations and acting in the best interest of the general public. But so far, I think APC has fallen short of that and has failed to achieve that in a lot of areas.  We are not seeing actions, instead we just hear Federal Government will do this and that, just giving promises they can’t actually fulfill.

Concerning the recent promise Vice President  emphasized that Federal Government will create 3million jobs in 3 years. What do you think  we can say about such statement? Also remember the 5000 naira allowance promised by Federal Government to Nigerian youths. Yet the minister of information Lai Mohammed, denied that the promise wasn’t made and that Federal Government never said he will be paying 5000naira allowance to youths. Are we being fooled or what? I’m beginning to believe that we Nigerians have been deceived by their so called CHANGE slogan. So what then is now the difference between Jonathan’s administration and Buhari’s current administration?

I’m sure Nigerians most especially the youths must have been pushed to the wall for creating an hash-tag #WhereIsTheChange on Twitter and other social media platforms to come straight at our President and the Vice President. See some of the striking tweets #WhereIsTheChange below:

I expected President Buhari and his Vice President Prof. Yemi Osinbajo to have perfected their plans and assignments before being sworn in. Although I’m not trying to discredit our President for the works he has done so far. I know he is trying his best in the areas which include:

First, his war against the Boko Haram terrorists. Although there was a bomb blast few weeks ago, but at least it is no more as rampant as before, as this has reduced drastically. It seems focused and determined which is why it is reaping great results.

Second, his war in favour of financial accountability and prudence in the management of the nation’s funds. His striving for cutting down on the cost of governance is a part of that noble war. Why Nigeria has witnessed slow rate of development is attributable in large part to the way our governments spend money like drunkards.

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Third, his war against corruption. He is really working hard in fighting corruption by recovering billions of dollars stashed away by looters especially with the recent $200 billion recovered from several ex-governors, ex-ministers & a presidential aide that was buried in Dubai, as the UAE is about to repatriate the funds to Nigeria.

Fouth, his carriage and composure has been very presidential. He shows himself as a high minded man who is above the fray and who seems focused on the larger issue of making Nigeria great again. He is not meddling too much into party politicking trying to portray himself as national leader of party as well as head of government. This has allowed him time and energy to concentrate on the serious business of finding solutions to Nigeria’s numerous problems.

I think these are the achievements made so far and I think more efforts need to be made to achieve the Change objectives. I think this present administration needs to be schooled on what CHANGE actually means.

Generally, the word “change” connotes “to alter or make different, to make to pass from one state or condition to another.” It follows that for genuine change to occur in a socio-political environment, certain fundamentals in the society must undergo transformation. Yet, it is another matter whether the change in question is positive or the very opposite.

Nigerians are already reading between the lines and concluding on the kind of change that APC is talking about.

While we view the APC’s change as one of deceit and desperation to rule over us by all means, the reformation we need now is a change from do-or-die politics, a change from maneuvering and scheming and playing on the intelligence of the masses in order to access political power to loot our commonwealth. A change of our mindset, believing that Nigeria is a great country and doing everything to ensure it thrives.

The change that we earnestly seek in Nigeria is a change from violence and destruction to peace and prosperity, where our unemployed graduates will continue to be engaged through the Subsidy Reinvestment and Empowerment Programme, SURE-P and other programmes.

The change the country needs is from a moribund railway system to one that is functional. The nation also needs to boost agricultural and other sectors, thereby diversifying the country’s crude oil economy and also installing regular power supply.

Nigeria earnestly yearn for these changes, not a change of the political baton to the hands of old and recycled crooked politicians, who are bereft of ideas and surrounded by fraudulent and pretentious leaders. Not an aspirant who shouts himself hoarse about corruption and change, yet dines and wines in corruptly acquired private jets. The country does not require this kind of change.

Let’s just keep praying for this present administration to deliver. All hopes are not lost. The sincere ‘change’ starts from me and you.


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