OPINION: Will Nigeria’s Youth Based Political Parties Be Any Different?
Funny how lots of young people now think that it is youths based political parties that will lead Nigeria to the promised land.
Let’s face it, it would be a dream come true if that happens and Nigeria is transformed, but I can tell you that I have probably seen more evil, greedy, cheating, wicked, bigoted, cunning, tribalistic, lying, thieving, scheming, corruption celebrating people below forty five years than I’ve probably seen above that age mark recently. Male and female. And I am in the age bracket.
Don’t get me wrong, I earnestly pray that Nigeria does not get a seventy something years old person as our next leader or the one after, and I do believe younger people can definitely be the catalyst for the true change our country needs, but there’s absolutely no guarantee, in my honest opinion, that a youth based political structure will do better today. We are all products of the same dysfunctional system, politically I mean, and it does not seem like we are quite clearly differentiated along age lines.
The only difference between the younger Nigerians and the older generation is that our generation has not been more active in mainstream political power play at a given time. I haven’t seen anything spectacularly different with the few young people who have been given opportunities so far. Like I told someone recently, if you want to get a glimpse of what a more youthful government in Nigeria of today would immediately look like without the older people in the mix, go take a look at the National Youth Council of Nigeria, the youth wing of PDP and APC, social media political forums or the National Association of Nigerian Students, look at how all of these units are run and give an honest evaluation. The National Youth Council of Nigeria presently has SIX presidents laying claim to power at once, and they claim to run a democratic system. One of them drove past me the other in a classy Range Rover Sports bearing his office on the license plate, wt* is the National Youth Council president doing driving a RR at a time like this? I bet you are a youth reading this and you do not even know there’s some criminals representing you in some council funded and supervised by the frigging ministry of youths and sports, headed of course by the red bereted minister from Plateau state. No sane young person in Nigeria with a flicker of integrity left in them these days would want to be associated with the notorious NANS. On social media almost all the young people in mainstream politics do nothing but snitch on themselves, lie outrageously, spread hate and shamelessly hawk their very souls for the opportunity to kiss the behinds of corrupt older politicians.
Friend of mine is among those who made the first moves for 2019 by registering the Young Democratic Party (YDM), they have good plans, but not long after the party got off I saw two people claiming party chairman already on Channels TV. Now we are hearing talks of scores of similar youth based contraptions picking forms and rushing into alliances in preparation for 2019.
It is my evidence based opinion that the older people will not readily relinquish power to the younger generation, and the quest to take over government will not come as easily as we think, except the youth show beyond every doubt that they are ready and capable of excellence in the political arena, and to run Nigeria differently, for the betterment of us all, old and young.
Sonny Akoh is @SonnyAkoh on Twitter