The Labour Party presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi has challenged Nigerian youths to think critically about the country they want to live in, the Nigeria of their dreams, and seize the moment to shape the future.
Obi who spoke on Friday at an international youth conference in Enugu with the theme; ‘Seizing the moment to shape the future”, said his message to the youths remains that they should take back their country because it’s their future that they are toying with.
Obi told the youths that the time has come for truth and justice to prevail but noted that the stake is high, “We are not unmindful of the odds stacked high against those who wish to take on the system; indeed, the attacks coming at us from all angles prove that we are up against well-entrenched interests”.
But that notwithstanding, “we are encouraged, especially by the passion and commitment which our young people are bringing to our ranks, and by their determination to take back their country and build for themselves the kind of nation they desire.
“The evils that have plagued our country cannot and will not continue forever. Those who are plundering our treasuries will not be able to do so for much longer. Quoting the great American social crusader Martin Luther Jr, Obi said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.” The time for justice has come. Let all those who love truth and justice arise and build their nation.
“It all depends on YOU!”, Obi further challenged youths noting, “Are you tired of being tired of this country? Then, it’s time to act. Let’s make the Office of the enlightened Citizen the highest office in the land. It’s time to take back your country!”
He said that everything boils down to leadership because all nations that made a difference had good leadership to drive their dreams. For example, modern Saudi Arabia is a product of Ibn Saud’s leadership. Singapore, of Lee Kuan Yew. China, of Mao Zedong and Wen Jiabao. United States, of George Washington. Israel, of David Ben Gurion. Turkey, of Kamal Ataturk.
“The current state of Africa is in direct proportion to the character of leadership we have had post-independence. Most of the independence leaders were freedom fighters, and failure in leadership led to seemingly endless decades of lost opportunities.
“The fate of Africa depends on Nigeria. And the fate of Nigeria depends on good leaders. Good leaders can only come out of a system of strong and capable followers, holding to account those they elect to govern them.”
The LP flag bearer lamented the fact that Nigeria is the giant of Africa. “But we are on our knees, bogged down by numerous problems. Each time we attempt to stand up, it seems something is holding us down. Meanwhile, we are all aware of the problems and the issues confronting us. Bad leaders. Insecurity. Corruption. Mismanagement of the economy. Incompetent people hold positions at different levels of government. Abject poverty amid plenty. Ethno-religious crises.
“It is time to stop that nonsensical cycle. We have to press the RESET button. We must restart Nigeria and begin to build the country of our dreams. We stand now at an opportune time to press that RESET button. We must do so by rejecting those who have failed us so woefully in the past. We will choose a New Nigeria”
Finally, Obi told the youth that Nigeria’s rebirth trajectory is clear and it’s anchored and driven by Nigerian youths seizing the moment to shape their future.