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Nigeria’s Unfortunate Army Of Politically Ignorant Youths By Akan Imoh

True, true, suffer neva start.

We are just seeing the prelude; the real movie is coming soon. We never start to cry, we never start to dey hungry, we never start to dey bury loved ones. We are still experiencing jollyment in comparison to what’s in store for us if we continue in our lackadaisical “siddon-look” attitude.

It is irritating to see how Nigerians adapt to every horrible and terrible situation like Chameleons. We have become silent survivors of suffering, yet smiling and moving on; gathering experiences of suffering and adding it to our curriculum vitae to be told at round tables to children yet unborn, who would also continue the chain of suffering and smiling with no plan to break the cycle of suffering.

It is more irritating to see the youths, the supposed leaders of tomorrow, sacrifice excellence on the altar of mediocrity, sacrifice progressive and positive change-oriented activism on the altar of ignorance, sacrifice political participation on the altar of indifference.

We always believe that one day things will magically get better. We pray always for a better Nigeria, as if God will come down from heaven in His splendor and majesty to set things right in Nigeria. We spit fire and brimstone in buses while being held in traffic on terrible and unmotorable death traps called roads, arguing blindly about corrupt politicians and how much they have looted. We keep forgetting the collective power of the masses and the fact that change can be effected by our collective efforts, if channeled in the right direction.

Yet, our youths prefer to discuss the round bottom of Kim Kardashian and Nicki Minaj, passionately tweet about the fight between Rihanna and Chris Brown, prattle with empty heads and fine faces; bimbos of the highest order.

I get frustrated when I read bios of youths on facebook, and I see ‘Not Interested’ in the column for politics. Ignorant big boys and girls; who should be more interested in politics if not the youths?! How can you not be interested in politics? If we all leave politics to these drained-out, geriatric and fatigued men, where will the radical change come from?

From lootocrats ready to change party without batting an eyelid and with no consideration for ideology? I think not.

A mentor of mine, Chude Jideonwo of Y! Naija, in his article – ‘Don’t get it twisted – anger is good’ opined that we all need to get angry, we all need to rise up with vexation and cry out in pain. It was collective anger of the people that led to the House of Representatives Ad-Hoc Committee on Fuel Subsidy “Mis-management” ; it was anger that led to the delay of tolling on the second phase of the Lekki-Epe Expressway; it was anger that caused the PDP to lose the governorship in Edo State; it was anger that led Mr. President to rescind his decision to rename the University of Lagos.

My take on that opinion is quite simple: Our youths do not even know what to be angry about. Ignorance has been used to rub our faces like petroleum jelly. We are blinded by mediocrity and lack of interest in whom and how we are governed.

Tell me, how many young people know what the foreign reserve is about? How many young people know about the Sovereign Wealth Fund is? How many young people know that serious countries are seriously looking for alternatives to petroleum? Have you realized that a news story on Whizkid or Davido sells better that a political analysis?

Parents warn their children to stay clear of politics. We have been taught that it is a dirty game and only dirty people can play it. As if that’s not enough, a popular religious sect sees it as a violation of rules for its members to go into politics. The members of this sect do not even vote during elections, yet we want a better Nigeria. Don’t worry magic will happen.

We so much believe in that part of the bible that says ‘a thousand and ten thousand shall fall by our sides, but nothing shall happen to us’, so we act like we don’t see the people that are being killed by accidents and armed robbers on Benin-Ore road. We act like we don’t see the people being murdered by Boko Haram. We act like we don’t see the people being murdered emotionally when they have to write UTME five times before getting admission into a university, or the ones that have to trek the length and breadth of Lagos to secure a job. No, we are only conscious of our well being.

Until we rise and start asking the right questions and getting involved in politics, we may continue in this downward trend into abyss.

—-» Akan Imoh is a Media Content Provider/Creative Writer. He has a burning passion for talent development among youths in a Nigeria with unique intricacies.
He blogs at Ovasabii.com and on twitter, he is @Ovasabii

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