Elders and a failed nation


Sir: To build a nation where peace and justice shall reign. This is the last line in the second stanza of our national anthem. The second stanza happens to be my personal favourite part of the anthem as it calls on God to guide our leaders right and help our youths the truth to know. 

Isn’t it shameful that we have been writing the same articles for 57 years? Isn’t it shameful that we’ve been suffering the same shameful plight for 57 years? Isn’t it shameful that the story is still the same for 57 years? Bad roads, poor education system, inadequate health care facilities, unstable power supply, discrimination based on tribe and religion, corruption at all levels of government. Isn’t it shameful that we protest and campaign over the same national issues for 57 years? I suppose it isn’t very surprising when you realise that we have had the same set of leaders for 30 years.
 
The ruling class has remained the same with the same men and women and the same families. They just keep recycling them. I wonder what sort of democracy we have here. How they have managed to keep the youth distracted from the truth deserves study. How they have constantly been able to manipulate the young people of Nigeria and convince them to pick up arms against their brothers simply because they speak a different language remains a mystery to me.

 
It saddens me greatly that we have such great a population of able-bodied and enterprising young people, but the system has been set up to keep the rich richer and the poor poorer. Getting admitted into public universities can at this point be compared to getting a U.S. visa. Isn’t it amazing how Nigerian students seem to excel in universities overseas but struggle in Nigeria?
 
Getting a decent job based on your merit and is nearly impossible. Over the years, they have deliberately denied the youth the potential to grow and become leaders. Rather they choose nepotism by using their own offspring to fill the few vacancies in the country. They exploit our vulnerability and push young people into fraud, robbery, prostitution, kidnapping and other crimes. How do we continue to survive like this?

Arise young people of Nigeria. Wake up and smell the coffee. The time has come for us to take charge of our own destiny. The time has come for us to lift one another up with love and resilience. Our leaders have failed us. It is now up to us to build a better Nigeria for ourselves, our children and for future generations. It is up to us to show them how it should be done. It is up to us to build a nation where peace and justice shall reign. 
Chisom J. Omeokachie is a Student of Mass-Communication, Nnamdi Azikiwe University Akwa.

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Chisom J. Omeokachie


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