By: Yusuf Akinpelu
The Vice President of Nigeria, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, on Saturday, downplayed the chances of a youth becoming the president of the nation.
The Professor of Law said this while reacting to the rationale behind the exorbitant price of the nomination form of the All Progressive Congress, APC, for the office of the President during the 9th Sigma Club Public Lecture held at the International Conference Centre University of Ibadan.
He said this to an audience of youths in his lecture titled “Developing the nation through youth empowerment.”
He explained that the youths should start from grassroots and then move on to the local government level through to the federal level.
“Don’t worry yourself about running for president; it will take a while,” he emphasized
He added that: “Anybody who wants a career in political positions should also make an attempt to get involved in public service since there are less than 2000 of such positions. Get involved in public service.”
In the same vein, Mr Osinbajo called on the youths to always hold the government accountable. He stressed that though “the government’s role is to create an enabling environment for the youths to be empowered,” but for this to happen, the youths must “take time to scrutinize their [the government’s] arguments. You are the leaders of tomorrow. No one should doubt that. However, that future would only be guaranteed if you hold your leaders to account.”
While admitting that the poverty in the country is a major concern to the government, he faulted the grand corruption and high rate of borrowing of the past administration “despite earning more.”
“The most important drain to our public revenue is grand corruption which is simply going to the treasury and withdrawing money — stealing it in short,” he stressed
“No nation can possibly prosper when its commonwealth is spent in that manner. So, we need to deal with grand corruption if we are to move forward as a nation.”
Osinbajo, therefore, called for a joint contribution from all and sundry to move the nation forward, expressing how the youths and technology can move the nation forward.
He said: “Everybody must pay attention to the nation’s growth. No nation is built by one person. The future of jobs is in technology and innovations. It is where the real opportunities are. Young people have an edge where technology is concerned.”
He nonetheless affirmed his pledge to the restructuring of the country.