ASABA- Deputy Governor of Delta State, Barr. Kingsley Burutu Otuaro has admonished youths to desist from negative tendencies, but embrace education to become effective partners as catalysts of change in the society.
In a speech delivered at the annual meeting of the 2017 Alumni of Owhelogbo Grammar School, Owhelogbo in Delta State, said “Youths, are the Leaders of tomorrow as very important at this point of our history when our youths hardly celebrate cherished societal values.
‘‘Let it be quickly pointed out that that every nation needs its youth. The reasons are that youths possess boundless energy, enthusiasm and revolutionary thoughts among others and are therefore vibrant actors of social change. It is for these reasons that they are also branded as “partners of today”.
I like to tell our youths that it is better to learn how to be effective partners today so that they can truly assume the role of effective leaders tomorrow.
In our national history, youths who subjected themselves to leadership mentorship rose to be truly leaders of the nation. We can mention Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Tafawa Balewa and Earnest Ikoli among others who fought for Nigerian independence by using skills they had acquired.
In Africa and around the world, a few examples: “Woon King Chai successfully campaigned to change a 30-year-old law in Malaysia that prohibited students from having a political voice”. Sweta Mangal “co-founded a service that saved lives in India through coordinating a fleet of emergency rapid response vehicles”. They were both in their 20s! The likes of Nelson Mandela of Africa, as youths, were keen students and movers of their society egged on to great heights by amazing strength of character!
The Isoko nation has proudly held out youths of its own who rose very high in their careers in service to the nation and state. We have had Major-General Paul Omu (rtd), Gen Alex Ogomudia (rtd) and a lot of others as compass for the Isoko youth besides other touch bearers in the wider Delta State as guide.
‘‘The Nigerian nation has done a lot in continuing efforts to position the youth for leadership and nation-building. In 1976, the government of the day introduced the Universal Basic Education to give the youth necessary educational background. Subsequently, in the Second Republic, a programme, tagged Cumulative and Qualitative Education was introduced to give youths the basic training for them to be effective leaders tomorrow. For character moulding of youths, programmes such as the “Ethical Movement”, “War Against Indiscipline” and the “National Orientation Agency” have had to be introduced at one time or the other.
‘‘You are no doubt aware, that Senator (Dr.) Ifeanyi Okowa-led Delta State Government had, at inception, began programmes for skills acquisition by youths who would develop to be leaders of tomorrow. The YAGEP, STEP and other programmes are additionally aimed at making our youths to be self-reliant in a world with increasing unemployment.
‘‘If the youths do not take advantage of institutions put in place by government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs), they can hardly be partners of today, let alone leaders tomorrow. Youths of the Isoko nation, as should the entire youths of Delta State, must therefore take advantage of the numerous educational institutions and opportunities. They should acquire skills for self-employment. They should subject themselves to leadership mentorship and evince well in time the qualities of good leadership to be leaders of tomorrow. There could be benefits for this such as scholarship for those with demonstrated leadership qualities. Let us take an example: Under the aegis of “Chevening”, the UK “offers scholarships to students who have displayed leadership traits in countries that have already seen – or are still undergoing – social, political, or economic turbulence, turbulence that typically seems to adversely affect young people disproportionately”. Also, it is more likely that Government would appoint persons with leadership traits for positions of responsibility. Above all, Delta youth should be guided by patriotism to be able to lead our state and nation aright.
‘‘The Delta State Government would continue to uplift the Delta Youth as long as it holds the capacity to do so in terms of resources. I therefore call on Isoko youths who have been LARGELY EXEMPLARY to CONTINUE TO BE in the frontline of the vanguard of the campaign against oil facility vandalism and other vices capable of tarnishing the image of their families and sabotaging the economy of the state and nation.
‘‘By remaining exemplary, the Isoko youth would not only be fairly reciprocating government efforts so far in building their future but would be seen as empowering THE DELTA STATE GOVERNMENT AND NIGERIA to do more in building the youths of Delta State as leaders of tomorrow’’ he said.
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