By Amaka Abayomi & Gabriel Olawale
Senate President, Bukola Saraki yesterday expressed displeasure over the country’s failure to sufficiently tap into the promise of the younger generation.
Saraki said it is high time for Nigeria to realize that the greatest resources was not crude oil, but the human capital of its burgeoning population whose hopes and desires are driven by the quest and aspiration of youth.
Senate President who spoke in Lagos at the 2nd African Leadership Lecture organized by Segun Adeleye Foundation For Good Leadership in Africa, SAFFGLIA, said that the country hasfailed to unleash the enormous reserves of talent and leadership skills begging to be utilised.
He said: “I would like to use this opportunity to call on Nigeria’s youth to rise to the challenge of leadership in its many forms, be it in economic endeavours or on the political stage. Elsewhere in the world, the youths are making their voices heard, they are mobilising and getting engaged.
Saraki who was represented by Senator Gbenga Ashafa said the 8th National Assembly approach to the leadership question was to create the legislative framework for the inclusion and greater participation of youths.
“In a few days, I will be spearheading a youth development and empowerment programme in the Senate, in collaboration with youth organisations, civil society organization and other partners.
On his part, the Chairman of SAFFGLIA, Mr. Segun Adeleye said Nigeria leaders who are thought to be corrupt and incompetent were not born to be wicked, but in a way, they too are victims of lack of knowledge.
“For Africans, it has been a long journey. Along the way, we took the little things that matter most for granted and we lost them. Things like the virtue to love, prosper and be our brother’s keepers.
“By the way, who are our mentors and role models? The Chris Imafidon, Professor Wole Soyinka and many other outstanding Africans who have the knowledge of the truth are living abroad. It’s a monumental tragedy and loss to Africa not to feel concerned that it’s best brains are guarded jealousy abroad when institutions should have been built around them to inspire our children.”