Tag Archives: Leadership

Collins

@CollinsUma: The Benue leadership question

by Collins Uma

A friend of mine was in Makurdi recently. The last time he visited the town was over ten years ago. After he was done with his business, I called him to know his impression of my town. Did he see the changes in the town? What changes, he asked me. I thought a little bit but the answer wasn’t coming. He then said something that has refused to leave my mind ever since. He said Makurdi is one town a visitor can never get lost in. The town never changes. Everything remained as it was ten years ago when he last came to the town. One noticeable change, though, was the banners hanging from what used to be street-lights on the major roads across the town. Ten years ago some of the street-lights were working but now most of them are only good enough for the advertisement of different companies’ products. Scathing as this remark was, it is the truth. What happened to our street-lights? What has changed in Makurdi in the past ten years?

One of the major talking points in Benue at the moment is Governor Gabriel Suswam’s senatorial ambition. I do not have a problem with his aspirations but, on what basis is he seeking this election into the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. When the eight years of his governorship of Benue state is critically appraised, would he come up as someone that merits further election? Primary school pupils have just gone back to school after almost one year at home, the teachers not being paid the full amount owed them. State civil servants and pensioners are also groaning because they have not been paid for months. I have had a hard time thinking of which past Benue state governor’s administration Suswam’s has been better than. I still can’t think of one. Even if the Senate is a retirement home, Gabriel Suswam has not merited it.

I have spoken in different fora about what can be accomplished by a leader who truly has the interest of his people at heart. The last time Benue had such a leader was over 30 years ago when a certain Aper Aku was governor. He didn’t need eight years to make an impact. He did, in four years, what no other leader has been able to match. Below are excerpts of a piece I published earlier this year on his stewardship.

“Aper Aku was born in 1938, and, in 1979, he became the first civilian governor of Benue State, created just three years previously. Before February 3, 1976 it was part of Benue-Plateau State. For four years Aper Aku moved beyond his Ushongo community and left his footprints all over the state, until Major General Muhammadu Buhari’s military regime rudely truncated the beautiful growth being experienced by the young state in 1983.

“Within four years Aku had built several industries to produce fertilizer and process agricultural products, Benue having great agricultural potentials, and located these close to the areas where the produce was grown. Research shows he also launched commercial enterprises such as the Benue Brewery, Benro Packaging, Benue Bottling Company, Lobi Bank, Ber-Agbum Fish Farm, Ikyogen Cattle Ranch, Taraku Vegetable Processing Industry and Benue International Hotel in Makurdi. He initiated the Makurdi International Market and planned to establish a flour mill in Makurdi. Aku also built a state of the art State Secretariat. This secretariat still stands exactly how it was built over 30 years ago. Unpainted.

“He cancelled work on a large medical centre at Apir, on the outskirts of Makurdi, and instead began construction of seven cottage hospitals in different locations. He established two Teachers Colleges at Oju and Makurdi and the University of Technology in Makurdi which became the seed-bed out of which grew the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi. He embarked on an ambitious program to expand the number of Secondary Schools. He built roads in Makurdi township and provided the street lights, awarded the contract for the Art Council Complex and started work on the Makurdi stadium which is presently named after him.

“The military coup that brought General Muhammadu Buhari to power on December 31, 1983 and replaced the civilian governors with military officers not only arrested this commendable development of a state and the giant strides being taken by one man, it also ensured that progress was actually reversed. Many of the projects he had begun were later abandoned by the military governors, and agricultural production plunged. The elaborate water supply schemes that Aku had initiated was abandoned, and the infrastructure that had been built was not maintained.

“Buhari jailed Aper Aku and most of the other Governors, setting up military tribunals to investigate their conduct while in office. Aku’s health was broken by the harsh conditions in jail, and he died in 1988 shortly after being released.

“The foregoing emphasizes the degree of impact one can have on a society within a very short time if one’s heart is put into creating positive change within whatever society one finds oneself. It is instructive to note that the much that was achieved by Aper Aku was done with a budget that is a fraction of what state Governors spend these days without achieving a quarter of what he did. A situation where recurrent expenditures gulp a very huge percentage of budgets, as shown in the federal government’s 2014 budget, for example, cannot help any society desirous of sustainable development.

“The clamour for political offices post-2015 has started. The office holders with renewable tenures have started campaigning for re-election and those with expiring tenures are attempting to position themselves for higher office. This is regardless of how much (or how little) impact their administrations have had on the people. Nobody needs eight years to create enduring change in a place like Nigeria, considering the amount of resources usually put at the leaders’ disposal. Aper Aku did it in four years.”

From next year Benue will have a new governor. Will it be more of the same? Will we see someone who will attempt to leave indelible footprints as Aku did? I believe this can be done. I haven’t met any of the aspirants but, from the antecedents of a few, if I had to choose it wouldn’t be a very difficult choice. Dr Samuel Ortom has built a business conglomerate out of his personal resources. If given state resources, I believe, he will do more for the state.

It is a wise leader that, instead of just confiscating our common wealth for his/her personal comfort, chooses to take steps that will carve his/her name forever in the hearts of the people.

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Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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@StanbicIbtc set to launch annual business leadership series

by Jewel Stephen

The creation of deeper connections and development of a new cadre of leadership among people and businesses in Nigeria is pivotal to economic and social development.

A new forum developed by Stanbic IBTC, called the Business Leadership Series will do just this. It will focus on a wide range of economic and governance issues, with some of Nigeria’s leading business people in attendance.

The first edition of the annual series themed “Entrenching the Link between Leadership and Growth of Business” will take place in Lagos on October 16, 2014. The one-day forum will consist of a networking cocktail, three expert presentations and followed by a Q&A session.

Sim Shagaya, founder of online retail chain, Konga.com and international business speaker, Vusi Thembekwayo, and Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Holdings, Mrs Sola David-Borha will headline as lead speakers. The lecture will provide insights into the next stage of Nigeria’s economic development and be an avenue for key thought leaders to discuss economic issues of the day.

For Sola David-Borha, a major objective of the leadership series is to provide participants an enhanced understanding of investment issues in Nigeria and create a platform for players from across sectors to network.

The Standard Bank Group, Africa’s largest banking group, has been in operation for 151 years and has direct, on-the-ground representation in 20 African countries. Stanbic IBTC Holdings Plc. provides the full spectrum of financial services with a clear focus on: Personal and Business Banking, Wealth Management and Corporate and Investment Banking.

The Stanbic IBTC Business Leadership Series is strictly by invitation.

Richard-Chilee2

@RichardChilee: There are not many real leaders in the world today, and this is why

by Richard Chilee

When you look at leadership in today’s world, you will find an increasing sense of disconnection between the leaders and the led. In many organizations, people often get frustrated when they aren’t commended or when they don’t see a sense of community spirit in their work place. And many organizations, in their quest to boost the morale of employees, have often resorted to introducing different kinds of financial incentives as a form of reward. But they have soon realized that financial incentives in itself isn’t the magic wand – though it helps- to increase worker’s performance.

Listed below are three major reasons there are high levels of leadership gaps in organizations;

The ability to carry out the plans of yesterday today with an eye on the future; and infusing that ability to others is one way leaders can bridge the gaps in leadership.

 

  1. Top-down information and idea system

In many organizations, there is no cross-fertilization of information and ideas. Employees on the lower rung of the organizational ladder often feel disconnected from the real issues that affect their working conditions; they are simply expected to obey what they are told to do. This breeds a high level of organizational dissatisfaction and detachment.

Workers will give in their best when they are given a chance to lend a voice in the goings-on in the organization. When doors of ideas and information are open for all through chosen channels, you will be amazed at the ideas that even the office cleaners will bring forth. No one knows where the next big idea will come from. To achieve organizational balance, information should come from the top as well as from the bottom.

  1. Misunderstanding diversity

Many leaders in today’s organizational environment do not fully understand and embrace diversity. Many today’s leaders believe that if you don’t think and act like them or belong to the same academic and social circle your views will not be welcomed.

In order to bridge the increasing gaps in leadership, leaders must begin to tolerate and accommodate the opinions of people whose perspective are completely different from their own, this breeds unity in diversity.

  1. Too much futuristic thinking

A leader of one of the big corporations I follow told me his organization’s plans for the next five years. The plans were huge. But when I asked him about the big things the organization are doing in the present, he became lost. He couldn’t tell me, in the same zestful manner as he had when he talked about their future plans, what they were doing in the present. Many leaders are like that.

The ability to carry out the plans of yesterday today with an eye on the future; and infusing that ability to others is one way leaders can bridge the gaps in leadership.

Great leaders are men and women who don’t rely on the comfortable patterns of yesterday; they embrace the realities of today and are also open to the immense possibilities of tomorrow.

To cement the increasing gap in leadership in today’s world, today’s leaders must understand the environment in which we are in. Today’s environment is characterized by collaboration, connection and conversation, not control and command. Leaders must also know that understanding diversity and living in the present, with an eye on the future, are essential to showing outstanding leadership bridge

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Richard Chilee blogs at www.richardchilee.com

Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

Bunmi Olaniyan: Asiwaju Bola Tinubu – A study in leadership (Y! FrontPage)

by Bunmi Olaniyan

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I hope Asiwaju will tell those inconsequential yokels waxing idiotic lyrics in these very words without editing “if you don’t believe I am deserving of all these awards and accolades ask Baba Akande:Ask Lai Mohammed:Ask APC members especially the youth who have seen and felt my generousity

Teach the people how to fish and they will be too lazy to feed, give them fish and they will be eternally grateful…..Adedibu 1887

A lot of cynical Nigerians erroneously assume APC are the flip side of same political coin shouldering similar moral baggage as their main opposite PDP, but the truth is that they are completely woven out of different moral tapestry, working very hard to position themselves in delivering true dividends of democracy to Nigerians, which has eluded us at the hands of PDP councillors, local Government Chair persons: State Governors and Nass members amongst other political functionaries.

Take Jagaban Bola Hammed Tinubu for instance he is the Asiwaju of Yoruba land, leader  and Civilian/traditional Field Marshall guarding the South West from the impending encroachment of marauding PDP forces coming to hold us in perpetual servitude (we have not forgotten their 60years boast), not only this but using his own personal resources he liberated all the South Western states with exception of Ondo , then stepping back to allow the free and organic  flourish of  democracy and good governance  .

Grateful Nigerians, Traditional rulers in Yoruba land and several youth representatives including those in APC scrambled over themselves to confer on him enviable titles all at once to show their sense of gratitude for rescuing the South West region from certain servitude. He must have been pleasantly surprised to be considered so highly, to acquire this triumvirate of honour and applause considering he was only undertaking a selfless task. Even his mentor Awolowo I am sure will be looking down from heaven smiling benevolently at our Jagaban.

Uniformed service chiefs, Regional and National Political leaders past and present would never dream of even getting one of these honours, so to get several from students and youth Representatives,Organisations,Political associates even more than the afore mentioned all at once I am sure he was overwhelmed and completely humbled.

I know some haters and malicious souls with sinister agendas who don’t want any good for our beloved country spouting their duplicitous verbiage, claim he only got all those accolades and honours through a system of financial inducements across the board but let’s be honest that is the most ridiculous crock of self-serving Bull crap (excuse my French) i have heard…let me briefly assuage my anger before continuing..

Those who conferred such honours upon him would have been aware that Nigerians typical of their suspicious and cynical nature would be critical hence their obvious response would have been to refrain until a thorough investigation had been carried out and if they had found any hint of untoward moral blot summarily withdrawn the honours and chieftaincy titles to prevent any griping accusations of bias or (and) inducement.

Their sense of fair play and collective unction of gratefulness overrode that fear of criticism by haters and naysayers demonstrating he got these well-deserved accolades fair and square not just for Singlehandedly liberating the Southwest but upholding the noble and honourable Political ideals of Awolowo the late sage in thought deed and actions.

Even right now many reading this will vehemently argue Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has done nothing to deserve these titles accolades even the financial windfall that he had come into, in the aftermath of his Governorship tenures, that the whole exercise and Tinubu road show is a pathetic sham one would never find any morally upright and intelligent person desirous of a better Nigeria party to.

However i aim to adduce incontrovertible evidence to prove how wrong they are in their infernal and fallacious thoughts and inference towards the moral personality Of Asiwaju and why these awards accolades are well deserved for a remarkable statesman(not just a statesman but a man universally loved and adored both on land and sea south to the North, Nigeria and abroad)

His biological or adopted mother depending on who you ask late Iyaloja of Lagos also possess same set of Personality traits, proof if you need any as to the power of Genetics and DNA which was genealogically impacted  and passed through to him from her. Consider the manner in which she summarily bequeathed the post of Iyaloja upon her Granddaughter, perhaps intending to spare much older, qualified and experienced Market Women the added burden of that responsibility or perhaps following in the Yoruba proverb “Aja iwoyi lo mo ehoro iwoyi le”(the modern Dog is much suited and equipped to chasing after modern rabbits)

If you still have any difficulties or doubt  believing he is eminently entitled in any way shape or form I suggest you cast your eyes upon his  spectacles which I have never seen him without, modelled exactly after that of the late sage Chief Awolowo and the Indian Nationalist Mahatma Gandhi  never mind him being the unlikely fashion icon responsible for heralding a renaissance of the Awolowo cap which is now a sort of Fashion statement amongst many of his adherents ,and Nigerians generally. In actual fact I am proud to proclaim I just placed an order for two, one in wine with gold threading and the other in black white threading all I need now is the appropriate traditional outfit to go with it. I don’t hear the Pharisees chortling about Asiwaju’s honour and accolades being unfair and unmerited now.

Altruism and Social Welfare are embedded traits in Asiwaju Tinubu’s filial pedigree as shown above, to be honest he is so good at anything concerning Socio Political welfare that my suggestions to his Party members and leadership is to just disband any backward and unsustainable Party zoning arrangements or Religious considerations and unanimously adopt this Political enigma and Moral compass as the Presidential hopeful that will challenge Jonathan in 2015.

I am not a member of the APC but surreptitious rumblings I am getting from my underground sources in the party informs they might be harbouring parallel plans to my suggestions already which explains the sudden surge in different opinion pieces, articles flying about the last couple of weeks eulogising and chronicling how honourable and morally upright this man is. I say expediency in these grave and uncertain times demands they “close eye” and rip the plaster off the wound once and for all as delay of the inevitable is dangerous.

Let APC damn the consequences and simply announce Asiwaju as their Presidential candidate already!!What more do they want?

If the man is qualified enough to possess all these laudable qualities in addition to the awards, Chieftaincy titles and accolades then he is obviously overqualified to be the Presidential hopeful and even more important that elusive morally upright and accountable President Nigerian has been yearning for.

We witnessed and experienced his purely altruistic and selfless mode of Governance all through both terms of his Governorship tenure, the way he was able to financially empower many of his associates and minions, I mean just look at the Fuji Musician and one of my favourites K1 the ultimate, the man plays multi-faceted roles as official artiste, Public relations for Tinubu. I was bemused to even see him playing a prominent role in a recent Yoruba movie seeking to tell the story of Lagos sponsored by the Government so he even moonlights as a Nollywood artiste when Tinubu/APC needs him, the Man’s mind numbing multimillion Ijebu ode mansion is veritable proof of Asiwaju’s magnanimity to loylists.

The historical accounts of how Asiwaju repelled the PDP incursion selflessly of course and in the process rescued the South west from the big bad PDP wolf is the stuff of legends and a watershed in Political history. We must never fail to acknowledge how cordial and supportive he has been of his Successor Fashola especially allowing him a free and unencumbered hand, ditto for the rest of South West APC Governors. A cursory look at the prevailing standard in APC states symptomize clearly the dividends of democracy being enjoyed  which is missing in the rest of Nigeria, just visit Alimosho LG  Ayobo- Ipaja;Ikotun and lekki drainage to mention a few. Oyo state Governor Ajimobi after taking care of state Government schools still had money left over and rather than embezzle, used some of it to buy a brand new coaster bus for Rochas Okorocha’s school.

We know by dint of hard work, savings, smart investments, regional ,national and even global goodwill Asiwaju Tinubu was able to acquire a king’s ransom, prime landed property in Lagos and abroad, proxy shares in several businesses including the Alpha Beta contract to collect tax on behalf of Lagos state Government  and rumoured billions in the bank(that we can’t confirm just mere speculations from haters)

My only hope is that he will not listen to any of the jealous haters and fifth columnists who are going about town proclaiming that he is not morally equipped or deserving of being the Presidential hopeful of the APC or even the federal republic of Nigeria. I certainly hope as an ardent admirer that he will not sell himself short by opting for the demeaning post of Vice Presidential candidate as that would be denying Nigerians the opportunity and privilege of his vast experience.

I will hate him thinking “I am a 62 years old man, morally bereft and absent of good conscience and of marginal moral judgement accused of nepotism and dictatorial tendencies, the main cause of the dearth of internal democracy in APC southwest and nationally, with serial allegations of corruption and avarice swirling over my head”

The truth is that all these niggling and unimportant Inconsistencies upon Asiwaju in the real scheme of things are as important or relevant as a zero after decimal point totally useless.

I should feel really sorry and nothing but shame for those detractors who are being deceived by the PDP or driven along by jealousy which I guess most of Asiwaju’s critics truly fits into going along with the quest to unfairly malign the good name and noble conquest of this great man.
I hope he will be thinking  “Wow look at me with all my awards, accolades and eulogies, i am not just independently wealthy beyond many’s wildest dreams, brilliant but also a foremost Political strategist and saviour of Yoruba people very soon Nigerians, if anyone thinks I am not then   “Screw you I am going home ” in the immortal quip of my favourite Animated character Cartman in South Park.

I hope Asiwaju will tell those inconsequential yokels waxing idiotic lyrics in these very words without editing “if you don’t believe I am deserving of all these awards and accolades ask Baba Akande:Ask Lai Mohammed:Ask APC members especially the youth who have seen and felt my generousity, do you think they are just feeding me what I want to hear, massaging my ego for their own parochial ends and motives or deceiving me??

I am the king dawg!!! I rule this Mother!!! Come 2015 I will continue to rule this mother up in here..

 

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Olubunmi Olaniyan works in the IT sector in west midlands UK as a software testing analyst in JHC LLP and is a a writer , social commentator and budding entrepreneur. He studied in the University of Salford Manchester for his BSc in politics with Criminology and Postgraduate in Coventry University obtaining an MA in terrorism international crime and global security

 

Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

Opinion: Nigeria – Daydreaming about regional leadership

by Audu Liberty Oseni

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Nigeria can lead Africa but the indicators are not there, he further elaborated. We had hope that governors at the audience; Rotimi Amaechi and Babangida Aliyu, will provide meaningful direction, but their insight on how we can lead Africa is not different from Abba Moro’s.

It is important to show appreciation to BBC for organizing a debate: ‘Is Nigeria Ready to Lead Africa?’ on the 25th day of June, 2014 at Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja, Kano Hall at 5.00 pm Nigeria time.  I thank Mary Morgan, Producer BBC debate world service for inviting me to be part of the audience.

At the debate, we had 3 panelists, Abba Morro, Minister of Interior, Hauwa Mustapha, Development Economist, and Kalu Idika Kalu, former Finance Minister. Rivers state governor, Rotimi Amaechi and Niger state governor, Babangida Aliyu, were part of the audience, which included security experts, economists, civil society actors and young Nigerians.

The debate was enlightening, thought-provoking and interesting. Although, the theory of adultism did not give room to young Nigerians at the debate contribute as they ought to. The avoidable bomb blast that rocked Emba Plaza at Wuse 2 in Abuja an hour to the debate was not helpful for in-depth interrogation of the subject matter. Rather than focusing solely on the proposed topic, as we had it on the invitation and BBC official website (http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-27885700), the precarious incidence caused a bit digression, making us to almost lose focus on what the debate is all about.

At the audience, we were anxiously waiting for the political leadership to tell us how we are ready to lead Africa. Yes! They did not disappoint us, they told us at the debate. For the Minister of Interior, Abba Morro, Nigeria is ready to lead Africa because it has the highest population in Africa. For Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu, it is not a new thing that Nigeria has the potential to lead Africa, however, since 1960; Nigeria has constantly remained a potential state that is yet to be translated into concrete reality of development.

Nigeria can lead Africa but the indicators are not there, he further elaborated. We had hope that governors at the audience; Rotimi Amaechi and Babangida Aliyu, will provide meaningful direction, but their insight on how we can lead Africa is not different from Abba Moro’s. None of them showed the capacity to lead the process. For us as young people listening to them, we suddenly discovered, there are more problems beyond the surface appearance.

In this piece, I shall carefully response to the question of whether or not Nigeria is ready to lead Africa by relating such proposition to our current realities, which include poverty, youth bulge and unemployment, growing inequality, mega corruption, insecurity, to mention few.

For me therefore, it is important we begin to hold debates on our actual growth and development rather than simply singing the song, Nigeria readiness to lead Africa, and being emotional about our rebased Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and where we will be in 2020 or 2030 as it pleases the projectors. It is politically suitable to project that in the next 20 to 30 years, we will lead Africa, but we must ask ourselves:  what does it mean to be African leading economy? Will ascribing Africa’s biggest economy to ourselves solve the problems of poverty and inequality in Nigeria? These questions are more than genuine, particularly, in view of the fact that at present our poverty is at 69% rate.

Indeed, the neo-liberal  models  that  are generating growth and driving us closer  to  a  middle  income category  have  also  generated poverty and inequality. It is important to note that the market fundamentalists are enthusiastic to underscore that, 6 out of the 10 countries globally that have recorded the fastest economic growth are in Africa. However, they have continued to maintain silent on the fact that those 6 countries are also witnessing escalating inequality and severe poverty, for instance despite our rebased Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the much celebrated economic growth our poverty still stands at 69%.

Then comes the most fundamental question, is the growth that comes with gross inequality and exclusion desirable, or sustainable? Unquestionably not! Then comes another question, are the socioeconomic disparities perpetrated by the neo-liberal model a necessary price we have to pay in our ignorance of measuring how well our economy is doing? The neo-liberal model fundamentalists who sing the praise of our rebased GDP are yet to sincerely answer the question what is happening to poverty, inequality and unemployment?  Certainly they will not because the economists live in a denial and seem not to understand our current realities.

It is important we begin to interrogate the premise that determine our ability to transform our potential to solving our local problem first before thinking of leading the entire black Africa nation. For us to begin to see development, we must be a developmental state that acts proactively to transform the economy and the state. And we have to do so within the democratic setting which is the framework within which we operate.

Our politics at the moment is too confrontational and there is urgent requirement to find a means of transforming our politics to one that gives consensus to development priorities that could transform our economies and the state.  Our ability  to lead developmental process, direct our affairs, build  a strong institution and public sector, create a space for civil society organizations and build the capacity of our citizens to engage governance will be major determinant factors for measuring our readiness for development and eventually lead Africa.

It is true we are growing and we have the potential. However, our potential cannot be translated into development unless huge investments are made on education and health, promotion of inclusive growth, create employment and put sustainable issue at the heart of our development process. If we do not go in this direction, our current youth bulge and unemployment will be a time bomb waiting to be exploded. The issue, therefore, is not economists rebasing our GDP growth per say, but what are the policies and development models being put in place to drive development and turn our 170 million populations to assets and not liability. As we begin to adopt a framework for what is desirable, it is important we begin to think in terms of what is possible and fundamentally, ask, what we need to do to make what is desirable become a reality.

The point that must be made is, our discussion on industrialization is no longer holding. One way we can begin to redefine our path as a nation is to have industrialization as an integral part of our development planning process. The truth we must tell ourselves is, without industrialization, we are not going to build an economy that will create opportunities and end poverty. Apparently, all countries that have reduced poverty did so because the economies grew out of practical strategies that created sustainable jobs and provided decent incomes based on industrial growth, which is a key missing link in our case. Our model which bases on the intensification of our past colonial way of commodity export is not sustainable for our growth and development.

We must remodel our pattern of political process, at the moment, our political parties are not engaging the population and they are essentially “periodic vote gathering organizations”. We do not have any democratic structures within which we have debates on the problems facing us and about the choices that needed to be made. Our political parties are not people driven, their ability to understand what is happening in our society is weak and that translates into weak and unfocused governance. The factions in our political parties are about patronage not about the need of our people.  This character of our politics needs to be changed and overhauled.

As a young Nigerian, I think we should begin to ask ourselves sincerely what has happened to our country. Why has our country defiled all the development frameworks and models? Why have all the benchmarks we set for ourselves not been achieved? What is it that we are going to do to achieve them? I think, we need a sincere democratic debate with the state actors, non-state actors, religious leaders, business giants and citizens on what needs to be done. In that debate, we need to have a comprehensive review of what has happened during the last 60 years and come up with a new ways of thinking about what development model we need to adopt and what kind of future do we need for our people otherwise things might get worse in our country before they get better.

Economists, academics, and some paid government agents have gone to work proclaiming us as Africa leading economy. The error of language and obvious denial of our current realities by the propagandists has led us inevitably to errors in our policy formulation and implementation. This erroneous assumption we are imposing on ourselves is frightening. Looking at our current realities, one begins to wonder do we have all what it takes to lead Africa, or whether our self imposed mission are mere emotional adventure founded on obscured vision of reality in the first place.

On whether we have the ability to lead Africa, our bureaucrats, academics and government paid agents promptly make reference to our population, GDP growth and our recent rebased GDP to enlarge their illusion of our greatness which they have propagated and promoted without any result to show. Our problem with this kind of analysis with the assumption that we are ready to lead Africa when we do not have a firm socio-economic substructure, a functional industrial foundation, and a stable self regulatory policy further exposes the illusion and lack of understanding  of our bureaucrats, academia, ruling class in their calculation of our situation. It is embarrassing that we are still following the neo-liberal models in analyzing our economic growth and we are yet to reappraise, rethought and restructure our own model of measuring our economic growth.

Apparently, illusions are not easily surrendered, and when they are surrendered, they are often succeeded by new myths. This means, it will be difficult for the economists and our government propagandists to agree with our present reality. I am particularly worried, judging from our current 69% poverty rate, youth bulge and unemployment, insecurity, mega corruption, import dependent economy, poor education, inadequate housing, leadership failure etc we still impose to ourselves the readiness to lead Africa.

We might be rich, big, large, and wealthy or even a populous country, but we do not at the moment have the capacity to lead Africa. Although we might aspire to lead Africa because of our demographic, economic and geographic opportunities, this must be understood as only aspiration that does not translate into solution for our current realities.

One way to transform our leading Africa aspiration to reality is for us to begin to rethink our past, we must re-examine our democracy and the nature of our politics which is now our development framework, and we must ask where we went wrong, how and where we failed and what to do in future to have a better Nigeria. We must have alternative crop of elite with alternative perspectives. If we fail to dream new dreams and see new vision for the future, am afraid we are getting nowhere.

I call for apology from the economists and our government propagandists for their robust prodigalism and provocative assertion that we are ready to lead Africa, our ability to lead Africa is not just academic conclusion but a political will and political necessity. The economist and our government propagandists must admit, although we are rich in strategic mineral resources, in the prevailing circumstances of poverty, unemployment and inequality we cannot lead Africa.

To position ourselves to lead Africa, we must build a formidable military might, industrial base, a sound economic structure, a conscientized civil society, and stable political system. These are the ways to our leading Africa aspiration. Our false generosity abroad and poverty at home must be stopped. Although they praise us in our presence, they mock us at their private homes and conversations because they know our history. For us to lead Africa, this bazaar philosophy must come to an end.

It is not a taboo for us to aspire to lead Africa, but we must understand that there is a lot work to be done before that happens. We must think of how to achieve it and plan towards it. The aspiration alone is not enough, what matters most is how to get there. In our ‘camouflage’ arguments, yes, we hosted the World Economic Forum (WEF) and rebased our GDP this year 2014 and the economy is growing at 7% rate.

Beyond rebasing our GDP, what the economists do not know is that Rwanda and Mauritius did not wait for neo-liberal model analysis in addressing their challenges. Kwame Nkrumah, Thomas Sankara and Amilcar Cabral have proven the economists wrong; they have shown you can only improve the lives of the citizens via purposeful leadership which is a key missing link in our country that aspires to lead Africa.

Without a visionary leadership and citizens with capacity to engage governance, no matter how we rebase our GDP we will continue our aspirant to lead Africa. Economists must understand the neo-liberal models have not been solution to ensuring development anywhere in the world. It is a mere intellectual delusion, and those who still argue on the basis of neo-liberal models must be stoned.

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This article was published with permission from Premium Times Newspapers

 

Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija

 

CLICK: Dettol presents car prize to winner of Price Awareness Campaign (PHOTOS)

by Akintomiwa Agbaje

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

Anti-germs protection soap, Dettol, presented a brand new Kia Rio car to Mrs. Doyin Rebecca Ntosi, the star prize winner of its Price Awareness Mobile Activation (PAMA) Campaign.

The campaign was launched to raise consumers’ awareness of the reduction in the price of Dettol Soap from N120 to N100 and to reinforce the brand’s market leadership in the health and hygiene segment.

At a ceremony in Ikeja, Lagos where the presentation of the car took place, the Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili, said that the reduction in the price of Dettol soap was part of initiatives to make Dettol more affordable for Nigerians in line with the company’s conviction that good health was an inalienable right of everyone.

‘‘We want to make Dettol more affordable for everybody because we don’t believe that health is a privilege for Nigerians’’, he said.

Silivrili added that the campaign, which coincided with the commemoration of the 50-year presence of Dettol in the Nigerian market, was also in recognition of the loyalty of Nigerian customers to the brand.

Silivrili said, “This promotion demonstrates our resolve to build stronger relationship with our cherished consumers in Nigeria as we continue to provide them with innovative products that meet their needs and aspiration.’’

The lucky winner, Mrs. Ntosi, from Abia State, expressed joy for being the proud owner of a brand new car, which she said was the first to be owned by her family. She expressed gratitude to Dettol and Reckitt Benckiser for rewarding consumers and for fulfilling their promise.

Represented by her husband, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi, she described the campaign as another good testimonial of innovation and leadership which she said Dettol’s 50-year presence in Nigeria represents.

‘‘We thank God and Dettol for this great gift. We are excited, our joy knows no bound’’, the husband said.

During the months-long campaign, approximately 320 million Short Message Services (SMS) were sent to over 40 million MTN subscribers informing them of the price change. The messages also prompted them to play the Dettol mobile quiz, an interactive SMS-based game purposely designed to gauge their awareness of the price change and knowledge of the brand Dettol. Over 700,000 people participated.

Weekly prizes were also given to eight lucky consumers who qualified for the weekly nationwide draw after successfully answering three questions. The winners who emerged from across Nigerian cities such as Lagos, Abuja, Kaduna, Calabar, Port Harcourt, Enugu and Anambra, received prizes ranging from ipad 3, Galaxy Note 2, Galaxy Tab 3, iphone 5C and S, recharge cards, power generating sets as well as the grand prize, a brand new Kia Rio.

Present at the car presentation ceremony were two officials of the company namely, the Brand Manager, Dettol, Mr. Tolulope Olaoye and the Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Mrs. Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi.

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos....Thursday

L-R: Marketing and Activation Lead, West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mrs.Omotola Bamigbaiye-Elatuyi; Marketing Director for West Africa, Reckitt Benckiser, Mr. Oguzhan Silivrili; representative of the grand prize winner of the Dettol Price Awareness Mobile Activation, Mr. Kingsley Ntosi; and Brand Manager (Dettol), Mr. Tolulope Olaoye at the presentation of a brand new Kia Rio car in Lagos….Thursday

 

 

 

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Perry Brimah: Dear OBJ and IBB, we are ready to be leaders of today, not tomorrow

by Peregrino Brimah

ibb_obj

We can and will do this with you or without you. We are determined. You are seeing the force of change, the natural tendency of things, as Ghandi said, after a while all tyrant leadership eventually falls. Every wicked tyranny in history eventually falls. You are witnessing a transition period in Nigeria that no one could ever expect or predict.

This letter is to the attention of ex-President Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida and two-time ex-President, Olusegun Obasanjo.

On behalf of Nigeria’s youth, I will like to inform you that the Youth are coming. We have risen. We have decided to be the leaders of today. Not tomorrow that never came; the leaders of Today. We the Youth are reclaiming our country. Our country, a country you do not own.

This message is to inform, or advise you of your next actions. The two of you got us here. You two created most of the mess we are in today. You two rendered this nation nonviable. You two held the reins of government in maniacal style, devoured the commonwealth and created holes in the system through which billions of US dollars could be looted. You two with your pals, rendered the nation helpless through hopeless transfers of power. You two ruined our systems, our judicial system, our security system and our political system. You two invented the almighty cabal and empowered them limitlessly, transferring the endowment of the nation into the hands of a few wicked, rapacious monsters. You started sharing oil wells to the dirty, still being shared today for election 2015. You two have continuously controlled the nations ‘political’ dispensation, juggling power and implanting yourselves, your brothers, friends and your godsons into office.

It is thanks to the both of you that we are a nation under siege today, ruled by crazy, inebriated ruthless plunderers. It is thanks to you that we are the bottom of the barrel, a laughing stock of the entire world, not even making headlines anymore, not even when we have the greatest flood of the year, or even when we have the largest looting scandals of human history. No headlines. The world has forgotten us, condemned the nation’s youth as hopeless and helpless mentally ruined slobber. But Lord knows we are not. We are a force. We are things you can never imagine. We can plan and organize in ways you will never dream was possible. We are the Nigerian Youth awakening.

And today, we have decided to give you a chance to make this revolution less bloody. We are giving you a chance for a little redemption, if such can exist after all the atrocities you have done. Our proposition is simple: Fix this mess and hand over to Youth. And then, take yourselves on exile from Nigeria, never to return for the rest of your lives.

You broke your pledge to Nigeria. You never loved Nigeria with all your strength; you only loved your pockets, and what a shame that was. Like the Solomon story, you chose for the baby to be split in half and killed; you rather possess half a dead baby than see it alive if won’t be yours. But now, you and your ilk must leave our nation, or you will never see sunlight again in it when we are soon through. Corruption is robbery and elite robbers will go to jail. It will be a new day.

We can and will do this with you or without you. We are determined. You are seeing the force of change, the natural tendency of things, as Ghandi said, after a while all tyrant leadership eventually falls. Every wicked tyranny in history eventually falls. You are witnessing a transition period in Nigeria that no one could ever expect or predict. You are seeing a cohesive force of Youth ready to die to make change. Youth media, youth activists, and everyday youth moving as a force majeure. Rising up all around you.

The choice is yours, for it is within your power to do something good. We know you; we know the conspiracies you have plotted that got us here. Now, the people of Nigeria, the millions of destitute, the millions of sick, wounded, hopeless and grieving, represented by a Youth who have decide to take charge, direct you to fix the mess you created and be granted safe leave, or you wait it out in your mansions in Abuja and Ota, watch a lengthier, severe but by God, successful, intellectual and moral revolution, and be taken to the gallows. Yes, for all of us and our friends and families that have lived in suffering and poverty and died painful deaths in the hands of your governments, we will be brutal to the corrupt. We will take no prisoners.

Fellow Youth. We implore you set your differences aside just for now, at least. We can resume the animosity later, but right now we have a common task. In Ghana, the Hausa and Ga do not quarrel and kill each other. It is these wicked ‘elders’ and elite that have kept us this way; pitted the Hausa against the Igbo to distract us while they loot us silly. We can work together again as we did to elect Abiola. Why quarrel and fight each other over budgetary dispensation of $30 billion, when together we can fight and for once in our history, recover$100s of billions from looters and re-establish a full yearly income of three times as much for our nation?

Perhaps when we bring in our total oil earning, the true figure of which Nigeria has never known, and which more than half of has always been set for looting since the Babangida regime, perhaps we would have such surpluses and a quality, sane life, we won’t even need fight each other anymore. Once we get rid of these jagajaga, greedy, sick and morally deficient looters, we will have a true SNC. We will decide if we want regions or nations, all in the best interest of life and the pursuit of happiness with peace and security. If the time is not now, then when is it? Who will avenge the deaths of the innocent students slaughtered in Yobe… in Borno, in Bayelsa, in Benue? Who will ensure our police are fairly paid and equipped from the nation’s wealth, so they secure the nation properly rather than focus on street bribe? Who will avenge the pain and suffering of millions of Nigerians today and in the past? If not us and if not now, when will we be the leaders of the day? Who will retrieve the 60% looted annual endowment and give it to its rightful owners, so Nigeria will no longer have 112 million poor and over 100 million destitute, living under a dollar-a-day, while a few senseless, greedy cows can have hundreds of billions of dollars to lose to foreign banks; or can privatize and make phony companies in Nigeria to bill us triple global averages and extort us further?

To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. (Bible)

It is our time. The Youth Will Lead Today! We will peacefully, boldly fight this war! And we will win!

May God continue to be on the side of the oppressed. May God give us the power for this battle against evil.

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Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.