NIGERIAN YOUTHS: THE PAWNS IN POLITICAL CHESS

No politician as they say has a permanent friend or enemy and this is because they know how unpredictable politics is. In politics your sworn enemy today can become your bestfriend tomorrow.

Which is why I don’t understand why a Nigerian youth who is probably at home doing nothing due to ASUU strike or unemployment is content fighting wars on a politician’s behalf. Of course youths can be partisans and actively involved in the political process of their community or country but becoming a nuisance because of the monetary benefits involved, due to selfish personal reasons or promises of favour once your preferred party gets hold of power is not it.

There is a reason why we get called the leaders of tomorrow and there is a reason why this saying has only been in saying but not in practice and it is largely due to the fact that it is we youths that are pushed to the forefront of political battles, we are thrown to where it gets hot the most and not where it yields profit the most, our price is cheap and we are easy to sway, it takes little or nothing to make us unleash the beast in us, we are the sacrificial lambs who always get butchered. We can insult, slander and drag the opposition through the mud aggressively but why? Why can’t we just support them and still maintain our sanity?

You may want to argue that this only applies to youths who are illiterates and usually work as thugs for political parties but that is far from the truth, graduates and undergraduates have joined the bandwagon and they made the 4-5 years they spent in school a total waste, coherence, courtesy, intelligent argument, constructive criticism is alien to them. They are quick to insult before making their points, most of the times their points are meaningless because they have spent the better part of their time blaming and insulting the opposition. So how will you sell your candidate to me if you keep acting deranged?

Many friends have fell out and became sworn enemies over uselsss campaign clashes, in Ilorin where I am residing only wise folks still remain cordial with their friends supporting an opposing party. Majority are quick to throw insults, punches due to a slogan or accusations of what a party did  or didn’t do. People would rather settle their arguments with name calling than act like higher animals.

And just like that friendship of 12 years or more is ruined due to an election that would be over in two weeks! How huge is that money that you become sworn enemies with friends and family members, how much exactly were you given? Some of these people who are ready to die for their respective parties weren’t given up to a million and they are losing it so what will happen if the money ran into tens of millions? it is to start dancing naked while cursing the opposition.

Dear Nigerian youths, why can’t we take a leaf from the older partisans and political leaders instead? They don’t engage each other in fistcuffs due to their differences, they employ diplomatic methods and tactics. They shake hands and exchange smirks or a straight face but they still relate. They can still sit at a round table and engage in meaningful discussion even if they are plotting to kill one another, that is why they are who they are. Which is why two feuding politicans today are forming a merger party tomorrow.

So what exactly is our own problem? Could it be hormones? Is it due to the way we tend to be aggressive over everything that made politics seem to be reserved only for people in their middle ages and older? Is it indirectly part of why it is hard for youths to get political appointments? Because we can’t be trusted with power? Yet we keep aiding them and indirectly oppressing ourselves.

They keep saying youths can’t be trusted with power and this was effectively proven with the youngest governor in Nigeria getting unanimously declared as the worst ever in Nigeria. The Not Too Young To Run bill wasn’t signed into law because of ordinary people like you and me it is meant to aid the ride of their own offspring into power.

Why should we risk so much for people who don’t rate us? From the loopholes in the NYSC scheme to incessant strikes by ASUU and ASUP due to the nonchalant attitude of the government to how youths get ignored when it’s time for political appointments, all these show the lackadaisical nature of those in power towards us.

Time and again we have seen that we do not matter to them one bit so why are we still letting them manipulate and use us to play political games?