Oby Ezekwesili Comments: Yes, Our Young People Have Paid Their Dues But Has Government Failed Them?


Elections 2019The Muse

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo gave the keynote address at the 11th edition of The Platform, an annual event of speeches and thoughts on nation building organised by the Covenant Christian center Lagos. This year’s Platform also featured addresses from two aspirants in the 2019 presidential polls Kingsley Moghalu and Fela Durotoye. Other speakers were Sola Salako Ajulo, Leke Alder, Francis Adebayo, Prince Donatus Okonkwo and Dr Charles Omole.

Former Minister of Education, Dr Oby Ezekwesili, who has been a staunch advocate for the present administration not to be retained in the 2019 elections, bared her thoughts on the Vice President’s speech.

Below are her comments:

I appreciated that speech of Vive President in which he gave plenty & EARNED ACCOLADES to our young Nigerians who through sheer GRIT and GRACE have STEERED DOWN the bottlenecks in our country to EXCEL in creativity, invention, innovation and Productivity. #TheyHavePaidTheirDues

Evidence abound that Heaven’s BEST ENDOWMENT to Nigeria is not Oil that our Political Class’ avarice has turned into a CURSE. As the speech which profiled a few of the prodigious exploits of our young ones shows, OUR PEOPLE & NOTHING ELSE represent OUR BEST ENDOWMENT FOREVER.

I believe that the VP’s Speech threw up the most important Question of, “Do our Young Ones feel that any Government in Nigeria has a right to glory in their respective individual successes?” considering their constant refrain that Nigeria failed, fails and continues to fail them?

The young enterprising Nigerians are the ones according to Economic demographic who can unleash Nigeria’s Productivity and trend up our Global Competitiveness. Yet, none of this is possible without Good Governance. Why? The absence of Good Governance is a BOTTLENECK TO GROWTH.

Imagine if the VP had ended his nice Speech with BOLD & SOUND Policy pronouncement that could help the Young Ones in Creative industry & Technology sector for eg CRASH THEIR COST OF DOING BUSINESS in Nigeria!

The Productivity & Competitiveness BOOST would be the BEST ACCOLADES

As we head into an Election year, my sense is that our Young Ones have an opportunity to be strategically deliberate in articulating the ISSUES that MOST MATTER to them for Leaders in States and Federal Executive and Legislative arms of Government to SOLVE.
Work on this NOW.

The Young Ones – especially the Entrepreneurals (private, public and citizens sectors all have entrepreneural young ones) are best positioned to RESHAPE and RAISE the SUBSTANCE and STANDARD of our Politics. How?

By incisively articulating the ISSUES that matter most to them.

Ours has not yet risen to what is generally refered to as Issue-Based Politics.

We are at Base-Level where matters of the stomach (existential needs), stori-stori & mudslinging define our Political Contests.
ISSUES that matter to the poor, business, rural, cities don’t feature.

The truth is that even advanced Democracies are struggling to take their Politics back to when politicians competed against a SET OF ISSUES that mattered to various segments of their population.

Yet, it is much more critical for fledgling Democracies like ours to be ISSUE BASED.
Read this interesting piece on a rising cry for Issue Based Politics in the UK. I mean, the United Kingdom.

We can learn a thing or two from this piece. And let no one say, “Ehen, you see say no be only us? E dey happen for oda countries wey beta pas Nigeria”.


Here is the piece on Issue-Based Politics that I recommend to the Young Ones to READ in order to think harder on how to engage the Political Process & Class going forward.

If there is any ONE THING that carries the POTENCY to DISRUPT our status quo Politics and Political Class for GOOD, it is our Young Ones becoming STRATEGICALLY DELIBERATE in engaging the Process and the Players.

1. Probe the Players’ Characteristics.
2. Probe their SOLUTIONS.

NO candidates of political parties should get an Easy Pass anymore from the electorate -especially the young segment of our Voting population- who have URGENT & SERIOUS ISSUES that only Competent, Capable people with Character CAN SOLVE in the Legislative & Executive arms of Govt.

Our Young are ANGRY. Anger can sometimes be USEFUL. Useful Anger is the one I call “Effective Anger”. Effective Anger is the type of Anger that pushes the one who is angry to TAKE THE RIGHT COURSES OF ACTIONS that could become Catalytical to tackle the ISSUE that got them angry.

So our Young Ones are better off with the RIGHT KIND OF ANGER and not the type that is without potency to change the ISSUES that upset them. Hurling insults, resorting to violence and deciding to embrace criminality are the wrong kinds of Anger. Do your best to avoid those ones.

I posit that the RIGHT KIND OF ANGER for our Young Ones is the type that’s made some of them listen to Plato’s provocative counsel:

One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. ~Plato

The First Right Step!!

It is for this reason that I SALUTE all the Young Ones that have stepped out boldly to seek 1 Elected Office or the other. My desire is to see their peers who make up more than 50% of the Electorate use their Numbers WELL.

I call it #SmartElectionsArithmetics.

USE IT, folks

(As published on Twitter)


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