Who and where is the Nigerian Youth?— Manny Osifo

By Ikenga Chronicles December 16, 2016

Who and where is the Nigerian Youth?— Manny Osifo

Who and where is the Nigerian youth? This is a question I have often asked myself. By the Nigerian definition, anyone from ages 1 – 60 years are referred to as children, they are immature, lack experience, no economic independence, not tested, not fit and ready for leadership while those from ages 61 years and above are the youths in Nigeria today. They are tested, matured, experienced, have economic independence mostly stolen from the national purse and fit for leadership. So by this definition, we are all children in Nigerian. Now we all agree that there is something fundamentally wrong with that definition and scenario in Nigeria as against what is the real definition of a youth both in the holy books and the dictionary hence the question.

The fact that the youths in Nigeria have long been marginalized, demeaned and hauled down with no relevance or voice in a country they call their own and make up over 75% of the present day population has nothing to do with the PDP or APC or the political setting of the day. It is indeed a foundation problem, a disservice of some sort done to us by those before us. The will of the Nigeria youth has been broken. His spirit has been trampled upon. He lacks confidence. He lacks enterprise. He is not experienced because he has not been given the opportunity to fail and learn. He lacks choices because there is none. He lacks knowledge because he has not been endowed. No youth empowerment/development program. He has no say in his future because though he has gone to school, he must see life from the perception of those before him. He has been made irrelevant and cannot participate in the present or the future because the top is saturated by those there before him and there is no vacancy. He lacks economic independence because it is a jungle out there he has to fend for himself. That is why you still see youths in their 30s not married living with their parents because they cannot afford to take care of themselves with their income talk less of cohabiting with someone else.

Those before us have actually perpetuated this evil design and that’s why in Nigeria today the youths cannot contribute meaningfully yet they ask where the youths are. The youths have been brutalized, injured and left to bleed. A country where you still see men who are supposed to be enjoying their pensions in retirement homes making plans for a future they will not live in. Where men who have been in government or positions of authority since when I was in diapers still struggling with us as adults for leadership position and contracts.

Meanwhile I have often been told as a kid, we are the leaders of tomorrow.

Something has to give and the time is now. There has to be a paradigm shift. Now we know that if we bank on these people, tomorrow will never come and we will not see a better Nigeria. Nigerian youths have to see pass these evil geniuses otherwise nothing will happen and one generation will not pass unto another. We have to realize that they don’t have our interest at heart. They are self-centered, selfish, heartless, evil and not ready to leave the stage. We need to rise up to the occasion and take back our position of relevance. The future lies in our hands. I know all hope is not lost.

That said, I have long decided not to have dominion over my children once they turn 18 so they can make their own mistakes and learn from them, so they can take their right of place in the present and be ready for their future. That and a sound education I owe them!!!

Manny Osifo
Founder Childhood Memories & Social Media Guru
Los Angeles, California