By: Dongba Peterson
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Youths are the bedrock of the socio-economic, scientific and political development of every society. Every positive transformation achieved in any nation is traceable to the roles played by youths.

As a matter of fact, the pride we as a nation Nigeria showcase today in committee of nations is hinged on the roles played by the youths of the past. This is why generations yet unborn will live to remember people like Herbart Macaulay, Sir Ahmadu Bello, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe and many others who did this nation proud in the days of their youth.

Today, how many of the youths can the nation boast of? What are the youths doing to build on the legacies of the past heroes? Disappointingly, the youths have embraced materialism and have sold their dignity and conscience to detractors and enemies of this nation. They have cut the string which was used by the past heroes to unite us and now we have fallen apart. What one gets today in Nigeria is dependent on not being a Nigerian but where one comes from and one’s religious beliefs. Oh! The past generation will not forgive us because we have failed them. The nation itself has deviated from the path of brotherhood to enmity, from collective interest to individual interest. Great fighters like Karl Marx and Martin Luther King Jr were blunt critics who never worshiped materials. The youths today have paved the way for certain cabals to continue to remain relevant in this country.

The question that needs to be asked is whether these people have the will to effect any positive change in our society. We know them, they are around us in mansions, tall fences, cruising in expensive cars and flying in private aircrafts. Our joy is to see them displaying “our wealth”. They make us fight ourselves, incite us to cause havocs within and outside our domains because they feed fat from our distress and confusions.

The school which should serve as a platform for national rebirth, economic and political rejuvenation, and social integration has now become avenue for campaigns of sectionalism, tribalism and moral slavery. As it is today, one’s ethnic group and religious beliefs determines whether or not one gets admission into the nation’s institutions of learning and succeeds on graduation.

In a country like ours, where we are still searching for leaders, the youths should embrace such virtues like transparency, hard work, respect for constituted authority as it would go a long way to bringing back the lost glory of the nation.

The task of lifting this nation from the doldrums is a collective one. Chinua Achebe said, “we should never be too old to mend our foolish and useless ways”. We all have a stake in this country. I believe our past heroes had a dream of the name of the country in gold before they left; we cannot help but nurture the dream to fruition.

So, to the Nigerian youths, the time of our national rebirth is now. The onus is therefore, on us to arise and contribute to making Nigeria occupy the lofty place she ever was.

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