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Youth Day And The Intervening Quid Pro Quo – Gov. Yahaya Bello

Today the 1st day of November is an auspicious day in the annals of our Country, many thanks to President Mohammadu Buhari who again has blazed the trail in declaring a day in honour of the Nigerian Youth, indeed this feat reminds one of the beautiful spectacle that the signing into Law a few years ago of the Not Too Young To Run Bill, that Law that reduced the Constitutional age for those seeking elective office elicited. In so many ways this moment is a challenge to Youth Action, it is a call to Youth Inclusiveness and Participation in leadership, and more than any time in our history, it is Youth O’clock.

As the youngest serving Governor in today’s Nigeria, I must challenge the Youth to rise up, to wise up and to run for public office at all levels knowing clearly that power is never given but taken. I want to urge the young people out there to understand that mediocrity thrives where the smart and the sagacious remain as spectators. The time has come for our young people to take over the soapbox, to challenge for and to campaign for ourselves in the bid to fix our nation for good. No one else can do it for us, and no one else can best fix Nigeria but us.

We must rise to the challenge. We must demand new values in leadership. We must cease to settle for less and we must stand by each other in the battle for the long needed national rebirth. We must refuse to be used as agents of disunity and division. We must aggregate at the altar of national redemption and build values of togetherness centred on justice, equity and fairness. And we must raise new standards that lampoon blackmail, perfidy and falsehood as weapons in our body politic by making issues based politics the new deal. Yes We Can.

Compatriots, as we celebrate today, may leadership across the nation commit to new paradigms of youth Inclusiveness and gender parity. May our young people challenge positively for the soul of our nation. May the old inspire the best amongst our young people to peacefully take over the realms of power. And may our nation prosper under our watch.

As 2023 approaches may our quest for power at the centre be ideas and issues based. May competency and capacity be the basis of the contestation for the lowest and indeed the highest office in the land, and may brotherhood and togetherness centred on equanimity be the linchpin for all seeking to take our nation out of the nadir to promise.

Finally Countrymen and women, we must make the valid quid pro quo for this national recognition a pledge to build a just, fair, equitable, peaceful and prosperous Nigeria for all. This is the minimum, and this is the reason for which I shall be seeking the high office of President come 2023. This is the reason it is Youth O’clock. And this is the challenge before all men and women of Goodwill. May God Bless Nigeria.


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