Commentary: Nigerian Youths And Sustainable Development

Commentary: Nigerian Youths And Sustainable Development

Youth, they say, is the gift of nature. The foundation of every nation is the education of the youth. This is because youths are critical thinkers in society. They are the firebrand tools that drive a nation to its great path of development. Youths are nation’s strength; their characteristic energy and capabilities support the body polity. They also form a sensitive age group that harbours dreams for important social changes.

Hence, the development of any society is fully dependent on the abilities of youths. Thus, the power of youths must be positively utilized in all areas like politics, health, education, technology, business, trade, and etcetera. They should be integrated with moral value education to spread peace and welfare throughout the country.

Youths must have the ability to make choices that support the pursuit of educational goals and the development of life skills necessary for national and even local leadership positions. Suffice it to say that the incessant strikes in tertiary institutions in Nigeria over the years are cog in the wheel of attaining the development of youths.

Ignoring maximum commitment and engagement of youths in education today will have dire consequences. To better understand how to move the youths forward towards national development, there must be a careful examination of rationale for expanding the youths’ frontier for active participation in education for national development.

Therefore, national development will be a mirage when our youths are roaming the streets instead of being in classrooms. This portends a lot of danger to the security and development of the nation. Idle mind, we know is the devil’s workshop.

Education is one of the key factors that determine the future of our youths as leaders of tomorrow. Education is a way of bringing youths to the national theater. The role of education in positioning and providing youths with access to effective engagement in national development cannot be overemphasized. It is a way of incorporating them in the decision making process of the nation’s governance and nation building activities. We should not confine our youths to our own learning, for they were born in another time. Education is simply the soul of a society.

Nigerian youths must be given the necessary opportunities. They have a voice that must be given greater say and attention in an effort to make their contributions in the way they are governed. Kudos must, however go to Governor Willie Obiano for immensely empowering the youths in governance. It is a thing of joy that majority of members of his cabinet and political appointees are youths.

However, the prevailing circumstances in the country have extenuated the potentials of youths as agents of social change and development. The sensitivity of our youths has been greatly challenged due to their entrapment into the treacherous triangle of poverty, strike and unemployment.

And the persistence of these social problems has created an environment where youths are cheaply available for manipulation by self-seeking politicians, bandits, herders and criminals. Poverty, illiteracy, sexism, unemployment and rampant closure of universities and polytechnic due to strikes are interrelated circumstances that stagnate the youth and constitute a state of deprivation.

As the youth continue to remain in this state, there is a pent-up emotions and untapped energies. They provide cheap labour to execute the design of political gladiators and ethnic champions. There is an urgent need therefore to arrest these conditions and signal society to reconsider its decision on the participation of youths in nation building. Youths must be highly incorporated into national development as a whole. Decision makers must take decisive actions to curtail incessant strikes in schools.

To help guide them away from crime and drug abuse, we are to help the youth through education and vocational knowledge that will make them relevant. Other leaders should equally emulate Akpokuedike in the social, political and economic empowerment of our youth.

TDPel Media

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