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Of Nigerian youth in elections: A reflection into self Of Nigerian youth in elections: A reflection into self
by Ovi Magazine Guest
2023-03-09 07:18:24
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Of Nigerian youth in elections: A reflection into self
By Taiye Olaniyi

What really makes one a youth depends on the actual age of the individual, health condition, lifestyle, and mind. It could be very confusing to know one's age for many of us approaching 70 years in a none record keeping environment such as ours, an environment where appearance could be deceptive but then when health condition starts to take its toll, one gets wiser in wisdom or/ foolishness depending on what side of the divide one has grown to germinate.

Lagbaja, one of the few sane music maestros, a refined celebrity and partly youth, partly old toothless, had at one time or the other convinced one in confusion as to the mathematical means of measuring age as he sang, "I may be 60 something, I may be 70 something, in my mind, am 20 something, ma ma wo ti ikun mi, se bi Obe lo wa ni be.” Lagbaja was indirectly proving that age is most times of the mind when an Aristo is in the territory of demdem opekes or pepperless as we used to refer to fine girls and big ladies during our days, especially those days when men, were men.

Ebenezer Obey another fantastic Yoruba musician whose music used to exhume in promotion of Yoruba arcane wisdom also reminded the aged ones " Agba bura fun wa be we o ba se o ri," that the old ones should swear with if one had also not engaged in youthful exuberance at one point or the other when growing. He however again reminded one to be mindful of one's behaviour as an elderly person. As a youth, one is always propelled to engage in many things as proofs of courage, and in this wise one behaves one kind or the other but most times, leaping without looking thus leading to regrets or prowess in the future.

Son of Man was never involved in the riot of 1970 at Titcombe College Egbe but was punished twice even though senior Emmanuel Amurawaiye and I quarantined ourselves at one of the uncompleted buildings at Egbe Hospital. The unjust punishment emboldened my mind as such at the University of Lagos I was by proxy, courtesy Samson Olalekan Oso and Otunba Segun Oladitan involved in ‘Ali Mungo,’ must go episode of 1978 students unrest in a sane and peaceful manner before Inspector Lucas- Police Force led brutality resulting in the death of Akintunde Ojo and fall of El-Kanemi Hall. Segun Okeowo though now late remains a colossus in youth and student activism during our days.

Today, Nigerian youths are daily being used and misused in a myriad of ways, especially by those who help them burn their future but still refer to them as leaders of tomorrow. The Nigerian youths of today are the ones being stampeded into revolutionary feelings without philosophic ideals that brought up the same aspect of the French revolution, the Industrial Revolution in Britain, Marxist and other Socialist/ Welfarist Revolutions against the Gluttony Revolutions of the Nigerian political class of today.

Lagos and Nigeria are yet to be fumigated by the" ENDSARS" scenarios both at its noble, destructive, and mad approaches the memory of such still recurring like a decimal even in current elections' dispositions. At political rallies and other nocturnal caucuses, the youths are being used and misused as chattels, drug inhalers, and chewers of hemp. Also, they’re used to vandalize oil pipes and serve as warlords of religion and ethnic sentiments.

Come think about it on the condition our youths would for the first time think deeply when elections approach and are done who benefits and whose children are cycled, recycled, and encircled in corridors of power? Since the annulment of the June 12, 1993, presidential elections, how many of the wounded, the dead, and families of such have been salvaged from wrecks, financial wreckage, and the trauma attendant to such?

Ever always, it is the children of our so-called excellencies and honourables that usually junket in corridors of power and emerge as commissioners as special, personal and senior special assistants, directors of organisations, and other unwholesome and corruptible portfolios. Such include the dividends of democracy that go along with them. Thugs today, drug addiction, flag bearing of the religious and ethnic front lining still perpetuate our youths as slaves and puppets in the hands of the powerful cabals, cartels, and Nigerian political cultists.

The great spoilers, your future spoilers, they that hide their children in bunkers when abroad, surround themselves with a brigade of guards, or daily dispatch their wards overseas are ones asking you to maim, kill and destroy yet in the open sermonise for '‘Peace" in the open field. Nigerian youths please think and reflect, partake not in the destruction of your future, cast your votes peacefully, and let no politicians lure you into their paths full of ungodliness, insincerity, selfishness and perpetuation of only their ill-gotten wealth. Remember " In youth, we run into problems, at old age problems run unto us ". Reflect on where are the children of your revered "Elder state men", their legacies and what Nigeria do you hope for with the growing ethnic-tribal and religiopolitical dynamo?

The ball remains played whichever way in your court but also reflect on this admonition of sages of old, " Today is yesterday's tomorrow, are you moving forward in Thoughts and Conducts?". God Bless Nigeria.


Taiye Olaniyi, a retired Postman of the Nigeria Postal Service, is based in Lagos.

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