A SECTION of the youths of Ghana has demonstrated an exemplary conduct which is worthy of emulation by their Nigerian counterparts. They rejected bags of rice sent to them by their representatives, insisting on the job they were promised during campaigns.

Though the event in question happened almost a year ago, the video of it recently made a viral appearance on the social media (WhatsApp). The video which was also shared by Nigeria’s Senator Dino Melaye was captioned: “Can Nigerians youths ever emulate them and reject N5,000 given them by politicians during elections?”

A national lawmaker, Samuel Abu Jinapor of the New Patriotic Party, NPP, representing Damongo Constituency in the country’s Savannah District, on July 20, 2021 sent a consignment of bags of rice to his constituents to celebrate Eid al-Adha.

Media reports had it that the youths rejected the gift, chanting that the era of promise and fail in Busunu (their community) was over. “We didn’t ask you to give us rice, you promised us jobs and not rice and we have gone beyond the rice”.

When will the Nigerian youth and indeed the generality of our electorate “go beyond” the bags of rice, financial inducements and other material “gifts” which politicians use to lure them for their votes only to abandon them until the next election?

Weaponisation of poverty by corrupt politicians is common in many parts of Africa with Nigeria in the forefront of this. Government impoverishes the people so much that they lose total cognisance of the fact that the power actually belongs to them.

The constitutions of all democratic countries vest the sovereignty and power of the country in the people. The votes we cast for politicians represent a mandate to run government on our behalf.

 The people are the bosses, and those they vote for are there to serve. But because of endemic poverty, especially among the youth rendered jobless by poor governance, the tail is made to

wag the dog. The people are made to scramble for crumbs at the feet of their supposed servants.

The Ghana youths of Damongo Constituency rejected their representative’s bags of rice, demanding to be made fishermen rather than being given fish.

It is this strength of character that forces politicians to sit up, especially if the youth remain resolute on this path.

Nigerian youths have a chance to prove they can do even better than their Ghanaian peers.

The exciting array of aspirants on the various political party platforms present clear choices come 2023. The messiah we have been looking for are now available.

Nigerians should reject money, rice and ethnic/regional sentiments and install the leader who will fix our badly bruised nation and secure our future. Will our youths take up this challenge?


Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.