#NoTooYoungToRun was passed for selfish reasons | 16 talking points from the September edition of #ThursdayTalks

Without mincing words, Nigeria is going through very difficult times. And so, it is pertinent that we have discussions on the many issues that stagnate the countries progress. The seventh edition of Thursday Talks Lagos, a monthly conversation with thought leaders, change agents and active citizens which aims at driving conversations around the demand for good governance driven by active citizenship was one of such deliberations.

This event is organised by YNaija, EiE Nigeria and BudgIT.

For the September edition, Juliet Kego, Co-Founder, Whole WoMan Network and Akin Oyebode (Executive Secretary, Lagos State Employment Trust Fund debated on the topic: “Millenials and the Challenges of Nation Building“.

See talking points below:

  • I think we are making progress but economic disability is the problem” – Oyebode.
  • One thing we have to unlearn as a nation is a total dependency on the government and the inherent distrust of markets. We place too much power in government that such powers can be over-used. The government runs virtually everything in Nigeria which shouldn’t be so ideally.” – Oyebode.
  • For the younger generation, we have to learn from the mistakes of the past and attempt to create greatness out of it” – Oyebode.
  • If we do not face our challenges with a binary approach, then there is no incentive for our political leaders to do anything. People will keep getting into positions of authority and remain wayward” – Oyebode.
  • We need leadership that prioritises education. The current leadership does not even bother” – Kego.
  • We need leaders who understand that the private sector needs energising. More infrastructure to allow them to thrive. We need leaders that will invest in people, young people” – Kego.
  • The world is becoming more democratic and because of that, people have less tolerant of nonsense. Millennials are more expressive and have lots of medium to express themselves than people of the other generation” – Oyebode.
  • “We have lost our shared values. We’ve lost the core of what makes a nation” – Kego.
  • Let’s not be deceived, the reason why the  Bill could be passed now is because older politicians want their children to get into politics earlier” – Oyebode.
  • It is not enough to be young and mental, you need a structure to win an election in Nigeria. One of those structures is name recognition. Millennials must get involved in the politics of their locality. It goes beyond social media ranting and criticism. Get involved in the process. It’s not just about you having PVC but the ability to influence how people think and take decisions” – Oyebode.
  • We have a dysfunctional country where almost nothing is working. Politics and Government are what drives the economy. Millennials form the larger percentage of the governed and should be given the chance to participate in the process.
  • There’s a need to design advocacy that is geared towards a positive outcome. Advocacy goes beyond telling people to just go get their PVCs. Beyond the  Bill there has to be a structural change in the system so the millennials can actively participate” – Kego.
  • Some of the most ill-performed governors in Nigeria are the youngest. Millennials must go through the process so as to understand what to disrupt. You cannot just say you want to rush into it. Because while many are discussing disruption, they don’t know what they want to disrupt” – Oyebode.
  • Nigeria’s political system isn’t designed for competence but for cronies and settling people” – Kego.
  • Millennials participation in politics shouldn’t be necessarily confrontational. Leverage on the power of digital media” – Oyebode.
  • The advantage of youth is also its problem. People need a whole lot of coaching because inexperience is one of the major problems.

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