Why Are Youth Not Contributing To Restructuring Debate? By Anifowose Owolabi

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Why Are Youth Not Contributing To Restructuring Debate? By Anifowose Owolabi


Something baffles me and it really bothers my mind, the young people are not making much contribution to the “restructure” argument as we ought to, for the fact that we are the very future of the country Nigeria, and the core partakers of that future Nigeria, most of the arguments or the basis for the agitation for the call for ‘restructuring’ to my mind are mostly based on the perceptions,opinions and experiences of our grandfathers and indeed our fathers,as regards the country Nigeria, most of which are laced with mutual suspicion poison rather than the bigger pictures of a possibility of a greater Nigeria of equal opportunities for all irrespective of your ethnic, religion or creed and gender.

More importantly a workable Nigeria in the committee of Nations in globalized twenty first century planet earth. If we the young people are not making any serious input now,we may be talking about another “restructuring” in the next ten or fifteen years due to the dynamics of global socio- economic and political order.

The Nigeria of my dreams and of course of many young Nigeria is that which is blind to tribe,religion and gender on which presently our clamour for the so called restructuring are based due the the usual mutual suspicion. I am of the opinion that we should not only be futuristic in our projection of the country Nigeria but also be as pragmatic as scientific as possible. To the new generation of young people,they will not bother if a kanuri, Ibibio, Idoma man is the President of Nigeria or an Ijebu man or woman from my home town in Ikorodu if for instance he or she will not or cannot meet our collective yearnings and aspirations. Many of the so called amendments to the constitution as presently prescribed by the National Assembly cannot stand a scientific or logical examinations if critically viewed.

For instance, of what use is the rotation of the presidency if it won’t guarantee the security of my live in any part of the country or of that my friend from other region, of what use is the idea of religious considerations in appointments if it won’t promote efficiency and effective leadership but mediocrity and common place. How has religion helped us to build good road network across the country in the last fifty years? How has a particular tribe’s presidency build factories for us the young people to work and make earnings in the last last fifty years. Some are even calling for regionalism or confederacies as if that will stop corruption and kleptomania we have seen in the last fifty years. Let me not digress too far from the subject matter,the restructuring argument so far is as ambiguous as sometimes illogical in most instances as it is being promoted and projected by our leaders across the country and unfortunately our young people are beginning to think in like manner. Most of us are still thinking of resource control and fiscal federalism on the basis of the petrol dollar economics, when in another clime they are already living green, what becomes of our oil wealth when oil is no more needed?

Would the derivation argument still stand more importantly in our favour? This is just another instance. Of what use is a new state or local government if not viable but just because we just want to maintain a balance and pacify a region or have an edge over another? Another instance is the call for immunity for our lawmakers!, it is most ridiculous and senseless bereft of any serious patriotism and of course logic. Imagine what will happen when they are immune from the law, when now sizable number of them are being paraded around criminal courts across the country!. Does my argument now defeat the call for constitutional amendment, review or restructuring? Absolutely no.

To my mind, we need a new thinking as a country that has its fundamental principles based on our common humanness and love for one another otherwise we will be here again in the next ten or fifteen years talking about another ‘restructuring’ at best we will give it another nomenclature, it used to be Sovereign National conference at a time. Then other contemporary Nations will be raising their flags on mars and probably build their estates there, we (Nigeria) will still be where we are today. I know for a fact that the millennial generation are not thinking as our present leaders thinks, but I’m Wondering why they (the millennial generation) are not thinking loud enough especially as it concern their future more than those who are presently at the forefront of the ‘restructuring’ agitation.

Young people what are you thinking?Good morning Nigeria.


Anifowose Owolabi writes from Ikorodu, Lagos State. 

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