Nigeria: On the Brink of a Political Youth Revolution
Jan. 29, 2013
by Lekan Abayomi
NewsRescue- According to the World Bank, nearly 70% of Africa’s over 1 billion people are under 30 years. Nigeria, Africa’s most populous country, leads the pack with a “very young age structure” where two-thirds of 164 million Nigerians are under the age of 30.
I’m quoting Zainab Usman, one of Nigeria’s most astute female bloggers and OpEd contributors. Zainab Usman and her Zainab Musings as her blog is called, is one of many of Nigeria’s youth, in their prime, of high intellectual learning and competence, but of no importance to the Nigerian government. Do I need mention Sowore and SaharaReporters?
Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, a nation blessed with both natural resource and human potential, is riddled with poverty, pollution and politico- ethnic tension.
Teeming with an estimated over 100 million youth, Nigeria is globally renowned for its poor leadership by ‘elders’ of the same political club.
The massive youth population lack employment, 2 in 3 can not obtain a college level education, and apparently the only time the leadership of the oil rich nation is interested in its youth is when they are hired for deadly political campaigns or pitted against each other in seeming religio – ethnic wars at the command of various morally solvent political leaderships.
Indeed the deadly Movement for Emancipation of the Niger-Delta (MEND) was a creation of then governor of Rivers state, Peter Odili. These were youth hired and armed by the governor for use as political hooligans. MEND would later cut Nigeria’s oil output in half, triggering the need for the then Musa Yaradua government to create an amnesty program which provided express vocational training for the redundant youth.
The Boko Haram scourge that has plagued north Nigeria is no different. Reports indicate that these were University of Maiduguri students and other jobless youth who were hired and armed as political thugs of the then governor of Borno state, Ali Modu Sheriff. Boko Haram would likewise become a scourge not just to Nigeria, but the entire world.
Nigeria: Ex-Borno Governor Created Boko Haram – Gen Useni
Gen. Useni disclosed that he had earlier warned the former governor against the use of thugs during election, saying that like in Rivers state where thuggery gave birth to militancy, Boko Haram used to be a political thug group; but later metamorphosed into a terror entity.
His words: “Just like the Boko Haram issue, it started like a Borno affair but now it is becoming a national problem. I remember when I was the Deputy National Chairman of the ANPP, I went to the state (Borno) to commission some projects and when we were driving along one of the major streets, I saw young boys selling petrol in jerry cans and I asked him (the governor), why he allowed them to be selling on a major road like that, and he said, “no, no, leave them they are very useful, during the general elections, we can use them to turn everywhere.”
“So, it means they were used during the elections. So, that was how it all started. And if you remember, we had the same problem again in Rivers State where one of the former governors used thugs and at the end of it, they became militants. So, there is always reason for something”, he said. Read more…
The control of Nigerian youth by the older generation, exceeds reason. One of Nigeria’s ex-presidential candidates was recently praised in an article in the Guardian for having been the brain and singular engine behind the hallmark youth deadly riots in north Nigeria in which hundreds of innocent Christian and Muslim youth died:
Over the years, Ahmad has shown that he can go to any length to defend Islam. In August 2001, he said that the SCSN would seek reprisals against the killing of northerners in the South. And when in October 2001, hundreds of southern Christians were killed in Kano, by Muslim rioters, it was alleged that Ahmed inspired them.
In 2002, in the wake of a Miss World pageant billed to hold in Abuja, a newspaper, in a bid to drum support for the pageant, made a comment that was deemed disrespectful to the Prophet Mohammed. Ahmad, alongside others, called on the Muslims Ummah to rise and defend the Islamic Faith.A bloody riot broke out thereafter in Kano and Kaduna; lives and properties were lost.
The medical practitioner is one that never shies away from any fight aimed at protecting his Muslim brothers, no matter the controversy.
In October 2003, the governors of Kano, Kaduna and Zamfara states ordered the stoppage of the polio immunisation pending when the vaccines were investigated and proven to be safe. The decision by the governors was predicated by well-grounded suspicions and rumours that the vaccine, which was rejected in the North, was contaminated and had become a tool to pursue the depopulation of Muslims in the three states, where the poliovirus was widespread then.
But the new buzz is something completely new coming out of Nigeria. Nigeria’s youth have been coordinating themselves in youth movements to address the issues of their failed nation and mobilize to change these.
Youth groups have been mobilizing and setting up conferences and summits to discuss taking Nigeria forward, in August 2012 the Students association of Nigerians in the Diaspora, set up the ‘Building the Nigeria we desire!’ summit in which the discussion pertained, not to youth interests abroad, but to fixing their homeland.
And another movement this January decided to take the bull by the horns, gunning Nigeria’s up coming political elections. The SovereignNationalParty (SNP), a youth movement that plans for a “million Nigerian youth to together register their very own youth party,” as Lekan a coordinator of the group explained, has “gathered up to 2000 youth members barely 2 weeks after launch.”
The online website has over 400 registered members who post very serious words in its discussion and planning “Town hall.”
The SovereignNationalparty, unlike conventional party formats does not have any political candidates as yet, but only operates as a youth coordinated platform to create a masses oriented and youth serving coalition of Nigeria’s millions of youths, who will choose their candidate and work together to easily dethrone the current cabal of ‘outdated minds,’ that occupy governing positions.
And they are real serious about it. A recent statement by the group was directed at Nigeria’s youth and invited the youth to come in one and all to take their seats in their war for self-determination.
When asked if this was akin to an African Spring, the well articulated SNP spokesman, aka, coordinator replied,- “Arab spring… can you see the error of the Arab spring taking place now in Egypt, Libya? You see, a non coordinated movement easily gets stolen and undermined. Nigeria’s youth are smarter based on the experience. Nigeria is lucky we did not have our spring then…we would still be in turmoil. You need to have the structure that will protect the interest of the masses and replace the fallen one, before you knock it down.”
The SNP has even created a NewNigeriaProject website, which appears to be an online manifesto, but reads as a promise and plan to rescue and reshape Nigeria.
Our analysts have predicted that a youth revolution is clearly looming, and some even are of the opinion that the current government may not survive till 2015 with the rate of youth mobilization and the strong determination to challenge the government as demonstrated by the SNP. And nothing ordinary can stop the power of over 100 million coordinated youth.
Below is a press release sent by the new SNP to Nigerian media:
MESSAGE TO NIGERIAN YOUTH
The punishment which the wise suffer who refuse to take part in the government, is to live under the government of worse men. – Plato
Are you tired of suffering and smiling in Nigeria?
Do you believe that it is your eternal destiny to be in a Nigeria where nothing works?
Do you think that generators must always buzz in the background and be the source of power in Nigeria?
Have you settled and accepted Nigeria’s world status in deplorable roads and high accidents?
Do you regret those you have lost directly due to corrupt and greedy governance?
Are you embarrassed that Nigeria has the worst government in the world?
Does it hurt you that your family suffers and you cannot help them?
Does the very serious oil spillage in the Niger-Delta caused by government greed pain you?
Are you tired of ethnic violence and wish all those who kill other human beings or support and harbor such killers are dealt with in the harshest manner?
Are you frustrated about the masses in Northern Nigeria having 72.2% poverty prevalence, and levels equal to that of Eritrea, Bangladesh and Somalia?
Are you irked that Nigerians born today are, on the average, more likely to die before their 45th birthday?
Do you wish that Muslims and Christians can get along in Nigeria as they do in Ghana, or Burkina Faso with its Muslim majority and yet Christian elected President, or the peaceful reverse in Gabon, with its Christian majority, yet Muslim elected president and not be provoked to war by heartless, devilish devices; and that whoever does mob-war gets dealt with harshly?
Do you believe in a day where you are proud to say you are a Nigerian, your dignity is restored and the world clamors to visit and live in Nigeria?
Are you ashamed that today in Ghana, they say, ‘Nigeria-must-go!’
Do you ever think that the multitudes of masses should certainly be able to eject the handful of usurpist, insensitive leaders?
Are you fed up of the cabal, living in fortified mansions, with even more houses than they can never occupy overseas, from your God-given wealth, who look at you like you are a goat.
Are you tired of unintelligent leaders who embarrass you to the outside world?
Do you dream of the day when Nigeria not only solves its own problems, but also the problems of fellow African nations and African Americans?
We all know these questions. The list goes on infinitely.
Change is in your hands!
The Holy Bible says in Ecclesiastes 3 (KJV)
3 To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to uproot that which is planted; 3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. …
The Noble Quran in 13:11 says what means:
For each one are successive [angels] before and behind him who protect him by the decree of Allah. Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves. …
And Hadith says:
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, ‘Whoever of you sees something wrong should change it with his hand; if he cannot, then with his tongue; if he cannot, then with his heart, and that is the weakest form of belief.’” [Muslim]
And Plato says:
The punishment which the wise suffer who refuse to take part in the government, is to live under the government of worse men.
Have you not truly had enough?
Do you not notice, that we are now going down on a most dangerous path, where by the time we act, the Niger Delta would be already polluted uninhabitable, Zamfara will all be toxic lead, the North will be a destroyed, poverty and disease ridden global terror haven, the East will be an overcrowded, toxic waste ridden concrete-jungle; more of our loved ones will have died for useless reasons. Planes will keep falling from the sky, crashing into buildings and bushes, bodies popping up in rivers, buildings and holy sanctuaries being bombed and violated, kidnapping, piracy, oil plundering, with blood, blood, blood, everywhere. And the truth will be that, not just our leaders, but we all Nigerians will be written of in history as the scum of the earth, a people who were blessed most abundantly with natural and human resource, yet lacked the coherence and ability to simply lift themselves up, get rid of their hopeless governments and take their rightful seat in global affairs, Africa’s largest nation and the nation that represents the black race.
The present political class is the same recycled skin of the proverbial old lizard. They are good people, they have good intentions, but the age of their ideas is long past. We are at a crossroad as a nation, and at this moment history beckons to all of us to be a part of the change we need.
Decades after independence, neither our military nor civil political class has shown the necessary understanding, skills or ability to lead this country to a path of prosperity. In fact, we are being ruled by the same set of individuals whose only contribution is the systematic pillaging of our resources and perpetuation of themselves in power.
Power of the People
Nigeria has a 50% youth population who are marginalized by its government. Most of us youth are unemployed or marginally employed. But we actually easily wield the absolute power to change things. Do you agree that the time is now? That the time is now to restore average Nigerians to government and no longer be ruled by the caucus of our worst elements?
Our human capital is Nigeria’s greatest resource. Nigeria’s village squares, our online fora, where brilliant youth engage and discuss their lives, providing real time invaluable statistics, must be incorporated as a relevant part of a new intellect-based system of governance in direct contact with the people.
Do you believe that the major problem we have had as a nation, is being ruled by vestiges of colonialism, the same crew of our worst products, who were schooled by the colonialist in the art of divide and rule and exploit the people. And that the political structures today, controlled by these colonial cabal is what make it impossible for any candidate who comes up under their greed guided vampire platform to do well? Do you recognize that it is time to stop whining and the time to act and give power back to the masses, and that Nigeria has such intelligent minds that can restore our Nation to a supreme status of peace, progress, ethnic coherence and common sense, prosperity, strength and pride in less than no time? That Nigeria can have refineries working, 24 hour power supply, abundance of jobs, peace and security, good roads and infrastructures, a maintenance culture, intolerance to indiscipline and so much more, within just 4 years and not in forever as it appears now?
Sovereign National Party (SNP)
A handful of disgruntled youth, in February 2012, right after the insolent cabal-crew, decided to insult all Nigerians by abruptly removing the fuel subsidy as a new year gift, sat down as we all do in the evening, on a bench under the moon and decided that enough was enough, it was time to end this! We decided that it as time to get rid of these ancient, wicked and greedy leaders and enable Nigeria’s bright minds take over the government. In January 2013, they initiated the SNP. A very simple platform, whereby Nigeria’s youth call out to each other, come together, hold hands and gather on a unified front. Many of us never participated in politics, because they told us it was a dirty game, apparently to scare the good ones of us out of it, so they keep on at its helm. It is time to campaign for and serve our own interests, the interests of the Nigerian masses.
The Days of Whining are over, we will complain no more!
Dear you. We are not politicians still and we are not inviting you to be one. More than just a party, we are a monumental tide. We are Nigerians tired, frustrated and ready for change. Who are we? People always ask. Well, we say- look in the mirror. We are you, you are us. We are the faceless masses. Very ordinary multitudes who make up the cheated majority of Nigeria. Smart, able, willing but relegated to impotence by a government that only interests itself and triumphantly prides in reckless mismanagement. Our names are unknown, in Nigerian terms, we are nobody. But we are everybody. We invite you to join our ranks right now and be us, be SNP, own SNP, own your ward, and take the SNP message to your council. Win your council. Tell everyone that it is time to restore our sovereignty. Let us call every living Nigerian to join this cause. Together we will march to register our party. Together we select our best emerging candidates. Together we will rally. Together we will vote and together we will win and reform Nigeria. We will remain together from now on, on the very SNP Town Hall, all being a part of government and decisions that affect our lives. We will own our Nigeria. We will secure a future for those who follow us. We will advance our Nigeria for God and man. We are capable, we have decided and the time is now.
No Nigerian should be more equal than another Nigerian. It is time to claim our heritage from the oligarchs.
It is time for a clean start. Nigeria is budding fresh new leaves.
Be part of history, Join us. Join SNP!
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