At a time when jobs are no longer available, young people are called upon to learn how to climb the ladder by engaging in voluntary service. OKECHUKWU UNEGBU reports.
Amid the unemployment and underemployment ravaging Nigeria, stakeholders in Anambra State have urged young people to engage in voluntary services and mentorship schemes to develop their careers and make progress their course.
Stakeholders who spoke at the 3rd anniversary of Youths Earnestly Seek Soludo (YESS), one of the non-governmental organizations that fought for the emergence of Governor Chukwuma Charles Soludo of Anambra State, insisted that Nigerians have potential and are predisposed to various begging opportunities. people to exploit them.
Giving a keynote speech at the event, former aviation minister Chief Osita Chidoka described volunteerism as a path to success, which he said would also prevent young people from leaving their resumes behind. empty while looking for a job.
Chidoka, who is also a former boss of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), recounted how he became the epic of his career doing volunteer work for people, including writing for free for newspapers. He maintained that Nigerians need not flee to other countries due to economic hardship as there are several opportunities to be explored to improve the country.
“There are opportunities; with the opportunities Governor Soludo has created, I see Anambra State unleashing the great youth leaders of today into national politics and other sectors of tomorrow. You must seek knowledge as you are. Think of yourself beyond what the N5,000 politicians would give you.
“Sow the seeds you need to reach the top. I want you to understand the importance of using your youthful energy. Volunteer and your future is secure. When you keep doing something good on a regular basis, people identify with you. The path to success is through action,” he added.
Continuing further, he said, “Anambra State and the South East must pay special attention to appointing and providing opportunities for young people to enable them to have the experience and resume competition at national and global levels. It was the opportunities I had in my thirties that catapulted me to national prominence and a deliberate effort should be made to replicate the same from the state level.
“Young people should seize the opportunities of volunteering to enrich their CVs and gain experiences that would make them competitive.
As a student of the University of Nigeria, during the ASUU strikes, I volunteered to work at The Guardian Newspapers which gave me endless opportunities which expanded my career possibilities. Young people should imbibe the triple Igbo heritage of Uche (meaning), Uchu (willpower) na Egwuchukwu (fear of God) and avoid the triple evils of Nkali (pass you), Mkpali (disparage others) and Mmegbu (punish ) to make lasting progress.
Also speaking at the event, Governor Chukwuma Soludo praised the group for believing in him and championing his election in 2021, noting that their contributions to the project without taking anything back showed they had values on which people and government could draw.
Soludo assured the youths of the state of his government’s determination to empower them, having earmarked the sum of N2.5 billion naira budgeted for youth engagement and empowerment for this purpose. It is even as he noted that a new company was possible due to several upcoming opportunities.
The governor, however, expressed regret that over the years politics has been turned into a business enterprise, pointing out that unfortunately society has also failed young people.
“The concept of volunteering means offering to serve and to do things that are positive. We are looking for value. What value are you going to return? This question is for those looking for a public office. For every appointment we give, we have to make sure there is a vacancy for it.
“We are replacing the era of the culture of rights with productivity and empowerment where young people take charge of the future and become agents of wealth creation,” Soludo continued.
Other speakers including Chief Alex Ejesieme, a Senior Advocate from Nigeria (SAN) and Anambra State Commissioner for Youth Development Mr. Patrick Agha-Mba recalled that the State of ‘Anambra had always been a champion and urged youngsters to keep up the pace in their chosen careers by living honestly and seeking career advancement.
Earlier, Youths Earnestly Seek Soludo (Solution) organizer Dr. Nelson Omenugha explained that the group was formed three years ago because they believed in Soludo as a visionary leader with the ability and ability to transform Anambra State.
Omenugha who is also the Governor’s Special Advisor for Youth Empowerment Program assured that YESS will partner with the state government to explore the skills and talents of Anambra youth for a better society, adding that the group was already training 350 young people in various skills, including 20 visually impaired people.
“However, since our mission is very broad and pursues the development of society through inclusive youth mentoring and empowerment, we have also adopted an alternative and simultaneous name, Youths Earnestly Seek Solution – Soludo is Solution and our goal is to partner with Gouverneur Soludo to find solutions to our challenges and live up to the slogan – The solution is here.
“It is in furtherance of this objective that today’s event also includes the presentation of our book, ‘Partners in Development: An Advocacy Paper for Youth Development in Nigeria’. It is a document born out of a thorough process that involved rigorous research, wide consultation with relevant youth groups and interfaces with other key stakeholders.
“It is important to emphasize that to identify with YESS is to identify with a project for young progressives. It is an endorsement of a vision for a great nation. With great pride, I can firmly state that in YESS we are profoundly redefining youth participation in politics. Avoiding the bread-and-butter politics and rubbing my back, I’ll rub yours syndrome, which over the years has condemned our nation to a rentier enclave where good and progressive governance has been murdered , YESS demonstrated that politics can indeed be a healthy business, a patriotic vocation, where one is called upon to sacrifice one’s self-interest to advance common goals.