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You cannot get excellence from inertia

By Denrele Animasaun

There is a paradox in pride—it makes some men ridiculous, but prevents others from becoming so -CHARLES CALEB COLTON

Our future depends on our young. And yet, time and time again, we have failed to engage them and failed to prepare them for the future.

In the young and the powerful,(22/04/18),there is a call on our young people to recognise that they do have potential and have power to change the political landscape come 2019.

For years, our young people have been denied their birth right and their potential to achieve. The reality is, subsequent administrations have underinvested in our  young, they failed and are failing to realise that the young shall grow. So here we are and majority of our young are not in education, employment or training and little wonder, why we have young people who are ill-equipped to compete in the modern digital world. We know that given the opportunity, Nigerian youths can and will excel. There are no instant results here, and in the meantime, other nations have invested in the intervening years and it is now paying dividend.

In Nigeria, the gap has widened for those who have the means, and paid through their noses to ensure that their children receive a quality education. In the meantime, the poor have to make do and far too many young people missed out on education all together. With the exception of Osun State, with its universal state educational programme, O’Yes, will in the next couple of years have a better educated and better equipped young people due to its investment in their young.

The trouble with Dino and other lawmakers.

Dino was being transported by the police when, according to Police Spokesman, ACP Jimoh Moshood, the “hoodlums and miscreants” in two Toyota Hilux vehicles blocked the police vehicle conveying Senator Dino Melaye around Area 1 Round About, Abuja.

“In the process, Dino jumped out of the Police vehicle through the window and was rescued from the Police men by hoodlums and miscreants to an unknown destination”.

In the social media, Dino was seen sitting in the middle of the road, promising to kill himself and in effect get the police into trouble. Dino appeared to have been aided and abetted by some persons but they didn’t get far; “The Police team reinforced and trailed Senator Dino Melaye to Zankli Hospital, Abuja where he was re-arrested. The police aren’t playing; ‘The Senator would be arraigned in court without further delay. And his getaway vehicles and accomplices have been apprehended and are helping the police with their enquiries. The Teflon Don has no more room to manoeuvre. Shocking that a number of senators went to pay him a visit and were denied access. Dino is an abscond risk!

“Senate President Bukola Saraki led the senators to the hospital. Although he said Mr Melaye had not been fed for about 24 hours, he held back the details of the situation.

But one of the senators said hospital officials and the police are to blame for the situation.

“The police insist they would transport Mr Melaye to Lokoja to stand trial in a string of criminal allegations that included murder and armed robbery. Some suspects had allegedly confessed to being armed and financed by Mr Melaye.

Dino will provide more drama and mayhem.

Senate President Bukola Saraki said Melaye would require the services of a cardiologist, even as the courts had cleared the Independent National Electoral Commission to commence the recall process initiated by Senator Dino Melaye’s constituency.

Dino, should know he is not the only one on notice. There might be other lawmakers and I have booked my ringside seat.

The federal government have their sights set on several lawmakers and they have served notice. Ekweremadu, has a case to answer regarding 13 undisclosed properties scattered around the world: United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States of America, and the FG are seeking to impound all his undisclosed properties.

Abia South Senatorial District has started proceedings to recall Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, from the National Assembly due to his “inability to impact meaningfully on the welfare of the people through quality representation.” Of course, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege was not pleased that he was suspended and so brought his posse with him to the National Assembly to cause mayhem. He definitely deserves to have an extended suspension and a police investigation for his misconduct on the 18th of  April.

Senator Peter Nwaoboshi,is remanded in Ikoyi Prison by the Federal High Court in Lagos and for an alleged fraud involving N322m.

Senator Buruji Kashamu of Ogun-East is awaiting appeal decision which will decide if he is to be extradited to the United States regarding drug charges.

I wrote about in- THIS HOUSE OF DISREPUTE, NOVEMBER 23, 2014:”those that seek evidence that our highest hallowed house accommodates badly behaved and disgraceful men and women, only need to watch the TV and read in the newspapers and bear witness to how uncouth and disgraceful these lawmakers are. For those who are not convinced, I have nothing more to say to them as they have obviously lost their moral compass.


Please, below is an email from a regular reader.

Dear Denrele,

Re: The young and the powerful

Your piece of 22nd April 2018 on the above subject matter refers. About PMBs stewardship, you stated inter alia; “to be frank, far too many things that were promised has not materialized….”

In the light of the on-going “All Nigeria Youths are lazy” controversy, I want to observe that even when you uncharacteristically tried to pull your punches, you still went ahead to speak the truth, unlike most commentators I’ve heard/read. I agree. There’s hardship and disappointment.

Let’s be clear about one thing though. PMB did say that a lot of the youths are uneducated, and because they believe Nigeria is an oil producing country, they should be given a lot of things for free’…… But I don’t know how this translates into or meant that **”ALL NIGERIA YOUTHS ARE LAZY”**.   Here is my take: honestly, it’s sometimes difficult to know how to show sympathy to people for injuries that are self-inflicted.

Note: PMB segmented his comments and said, “On the economy……”

Here is a president who wants to grow his economy. He travels out to a forum of 53 Commonwealth countries and possible investors, accompanied by Ministers for Trade and Foreign Affairs; having a platform to talk about more than 60% of his population who are young. Is that the time and place to emphasis on the negative?   Haba!

I listened to Poland’s paid advertisements on CNN, extolling how youthful and educated its population is, as a means of attracting investors. Closer home, I’ve also listened to Zimbabwe in paid adverts on both CNN and BBC, telling prospective investors how youthful and educated its population is. In fact, they laid claim to the most educated and youthful population of the South Africa region.

If you Google ‘the most educated immigrants population in the USA’, it would be Nigerians. From press interviews with Libya returnees, even graduates are taking the risk of this perilous journey, all in search of opportunities. Therefore, for the president of such a country to mount a rostrum of creating opportunities for free, and all he would rather dwell on is the few ‘uneducated lot’, is not only wrong but highly uncharitable. There is a time and place for everything.

As for the avowed opposition, let me say this. If you would rather build your case on the foundation of lies, you would do well to remember a saying of Mahatma Ghandi. “In the end, the ways of the truth had ALWAYS won”.

My warmest regards.

Alh Musah Ali.


My response:

Sir, My greetings to you, thank you for your email. Having read the contents of your email, I must stress that I can only write from my observations and I am not one to sit on side-lines nor do I take the popular pathway. Yes, your summation is valid. Regarding that ‘the Nigerian youths are lazy ‘quip, if it was not taken out of context, nonetheless, it is dispiriting but then only a poor workman blames his tools. If Nigerian youths are indeed lazy (which I don’t believe majority of them are) it is because, they are not provided with the opportunity to reach their potential.  Everywhere else, when the environment allows, parents have been able to provide for their children; the opportunity to excel.






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