By Linda Nneji, Dallas , Texas USA
The youths no doubt remain the leaders of tomorrow even in a Country like ours where the aged seem to have hijacked power and leadership. Nature sure has a way of settling all injustices and as such, no matter how long it may take, the youths of today would sure be the leaders of tomorrow just as those aspirations of today’s youths can be met faster if they choose to support those who would consciously pursue those agendas that would see to the elevation of the status of the average Nigerian youth. Suffice it to say that the seeming conspiracy against the growth of our youths is being perpetrated with the direct or indirect consent of the youths who have remained the vehicle through which the aged and tired have found themselves in power. More often than not, our youths have settled for less perhaps in the bid to satisfy today’s seeming needs and without any thought spared for the future. The sad thing about this type of unfortunate thinking is that our youths cannot boast of fulfilling today’s dreams even while the future remain uncertain for many.
However, all hope is not lost if our youths can start today to right the wrongs of yesteryears by asking for better deals from those who preside over the affairs of the Country at various levels. The power of the youths towards determining who gets what in terms of leadership cannot be overemphasized and all that is needed is for today’s youth to tap into this bargaining power and make very strong statements that would see things done differently. If the youths are able to conceive the fact that they are the greatest victims of bad leadership, see themselves as one entity united in the adversaries of the maladministration of the so-called elderly and take conscientious steps towards preventing dubious characters and those with no sense of patriotism from clinching leadership positions, our society would indeed experience a massive turnaround. Yes, the youth either as a security agent, civil servant, entrepreneur, student or jobless graduate, etc has a lot of say and contribution towards leadership at all levels.
Political appointments given to the youths are good but the question is; how many youths can a particular Government give such appointments at any given time and what becomes the fate of those who such appointments are not extended to for obvious reasons? This is exactly why the expectations and the end goals of supporting candidates should be about those who have the credibility, capacity and sincerity of purpose to create an enabling environment for the youths and the entire citizenry to explore and exploit their God-given potentials towards adding positive value to the society. The average Nigerian youth, especially those of Imo origin, is smart and hardworking; all that is needed is a committed Government that would give them the necessary support they need to manifest their rarity.
Coming home, Imo State seems to be the worst hit in terms of youth underdevelopment going by the number of graduates our State produces each year. If there is any State, that should pay very serious attention to youth development, Imo should be that State. It is pertinent to, at this juncture, commend the political consciousness of the average Imo youth of today. However, some of us still owe it to ourselves to look beyond the peanuts of today and focus more on the deals of tomorrow. Suffice it to say that, any Imo youth of today who is not asking questions of what package the various candidates have for the youths and who is most importantly not supporting Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha to be the next Governor of Imo State, is not thinking about the future.
Yes, the PDP’s gubernatorial candidate, so far has the most articulate and realizable package for youth development and empowerment which in combination with his other plans and projects towards Rebuilding Imo; would ensure a brighter future not just for the youths but the entire Imo Citizenry. While a good number of youths are expected to occupy notable positions under the watch of Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, benefit from the massive industrialization that would take place in the State of which all partnerships to this effect have been consolidated, employed in the civil service commission; occupy leadership positions through the Local Governments that would be revitalized, there are also plans to:
• “Introduce our youths to knowledge in entrepreneurship, innovative technologies, ICT, agro ventures as well as time and resource management.
• Issuance of start-up loans for youths with desire to set up small scale businesses.
• Introduction of Master Apprentice Scheme (MAS) to identify, train and empower young people to acquire skills in different trades in partnership with private companies in their areas of interest.
• Establish sports facilities for talent hunt, recreation and development of healthy citizenry”
(Culled from My Agenda To Rebuild Imo: Rt. Hon. Ihedioha’s Manifesto)
Summarily, under the purposeful watch of Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha, there would be conscientious efforts to ensure that our youths are provided the necessary enabling environment to change the sad tales of yesterday and build a healthy environment where the youths are better prepared to attain their dreams, goals and aspirations. It is therefore expected of all Imo Youths and indeed all well-meaning Imo people to share in the optimism that Imo can indeed be rebuilt into a home we all would be proud and that Rt. Hon. Ihedioha remains the credible and best option to an Imo of endless opportunities.