Redefining Nigeria in 2016: The Youth

January brings a false sense of security. To many, January is an extension of December’s festivities. January excuses lethargy in the workplace; individuals are accommodated in January, despite their lack of drive. Of those captured by this January curse, many have lofty 2016 goals. With the laziness that riddles January, such goals and aspirations resemble folktales told to an uninterested audience. In essence, I hope it has become clear that four days have already gone by in 2016?

In 2016, the Nigerian youth cannot have a lackadaisical attitude to work. If you are unmotivated, then find other avenues to express your hard-work. Groaning will not be tolerated because, in 2016, the stakes are higher. If we are serious about the youth influencing true political change in Nigeria, then we must ask ourselves whether in our daily grind, we are inching ever closer to this goal. If, as with many, you are petrified about the economic outlook for the year, you must demand of yourself a higher level of creativity, industry and resourcefulness to succeed while others lament. At CreativityTurf, we have no time for doomsayers – we are primed and ready, instead, to celebrate those whose contributions will advance their communities, societies and the world this year.

Incidentally, a country like Nigeria is adept at playing brinkmanship with her politics, economy and even her security. In every decade, there have been those, who quite frankly have objectively assessed the Nigerian condition as a mess. Nevertheless, we find solace in that; from the mess have come great leaders and creative minds. You see, in 2016 will we, the Nigerian youth choose to succeed despite the mess, or rather be content to be defined by the mess?

In essence, one thing is true. The individual who will break ground in 2016 is not the one who will wait for January to end before strategizing on how to win this year. In fact, the individual who will be celebrated on the turf in 2016 is out right now, moving ever closer to the goals they have carved for themselves. In our last piece, we made it clear that in 2016; the stakes are much higher. Young people will not ascend to the zenith of politics and business in Nigeria with a defeatist mind-set. We, the youth have to show that we want to lead. We, the youth, must demonstrate our want by putting in so much commitment and deliverable solutions, such that we cannot be ignored – this is the paradigm shift. The panacea to Nigeria’s problems are not merely youth, the panacea are youth who understand the high stakes and willing to do everything within the ambits of the law to ensure that chaos is averted.

2016 will soon become history. At the end of this year, CreativityTurf will either celebrate the rejuvenation of our youth, or like Cassandra, keep screaming in the desert for a paradigm shift that might finally be heard. This paradigm shift is beyond an exhortation, but a duty call – for surely, the country needs our youth to adopt this mind, and execute her goals.

Mitchell Aghatise.

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