By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA-Former Vice President and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar and ex-Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode have taken a swipe at President Muhammadu Buhari for labelling Nigerian youths “uneducated and lazy,” describing the comment as shameful.
Atiku, a 2019 Presidential hopeful in a status update on his Facebook wall Thursday, described Nigerian youths as enterprising and “The backbone to our success.”
While lauding their entrepreneurial spirit, Atiku said what the youths need is support and appreciation, adding that with a little push, they could match their counterparts anywhere in the world.
“I will never refer to Nigeria’s youths as people who sit and do nothing. They are hardworking. I should know, I have thousands of youths working for me all over the country who have been the backbone to our success.
“I have always said oil is not Nigeria’s greatest asset. Our greatest asset is our youths who created Nollywood out of nothing and an entertainment industry that is second to none in Africa.
“Our youth are charting new frontiers; creating a huge technology industry on their own. Their entrepreneurial spirit, work ethic, and creative abilities are things of pride and should be applauded, encouraged and nurtured,” Atiku said.
On his part, Fani-Kayode questioned the rationale in the President’s remark about his own people saying, “What type of leader takes pleasure in slandering, shaming, denigrating and humiliating his own people before the world? What type (sic) of man tells foreigners that his own children are lazy and unproductive?”
Also expressing dismay at the President’s uncomplimentary remark, is Reno Omokri, former aide to Nigeria’s immediate past President, Goodluck Jonathan.
“How can you in one breath say that your country’s youths are lazy and don’t want to work and in the next, you appeal to foreign investors to come and invest in Nigeria,?” he asked, noting that the Commander-in-Chief may have jeopardized his mission of attracting foreign investors into the country.
President Buhari had on Wednesday, during a panel discussion at the Commonwealth Business Forum in Westminster, London said that a lot of Nigerian youths were illiterates and lazy who “sit and do nothing” but want to get free housing, healthcare and education