- Samson Omale
2023: Take Over Leadership Control of Nigeria, Obasanjo Tells Youths
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has called on Nigerian youths to present a united force and take over leadership control of the nation from the older generation.
Obasanjo made the call in a letter he personally signed and made available to newsmen on Sunday in Abeokuta.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the letter was titled: “My Appeal To All Nigerians, particularly Young Nigerians”.
He challenged youths to get together and bring about a truly meaningful change in their lives and the nation.
“Let nobody pull wool over your eyes to divide you and/or segregate you to make you underlings.
“If you failed, you have no one else to blame and your present and future are in your hands to make or to mar.
“Get up, get together, get going and get us to where we should be.
“Youths of Nigeria, your time has come, and it is now and please grasp it.
“If not now, it will be never. I appeal to you to turn the tide on its head and march forward chanting ‘Awa Lokan’ (It’s our turn).
“Not with a sense of entitlement, but with a demonstrable ideological commitment to unity and transformation of Nigeria.
“If we fall prey again, we will have ourselves to blame and no one can say how many more knocks Nigeria can take before it tips over. To be fore-warned, is to be fore-armed,” Obasanjo said.
The former president, while noting that the older generation of leaders had done their best, advised them to take their rest and retirement as “septuagenarians”.
According to him, the vigour, energy, agility, dynamism and outreach that the job of leadership of Nigeria requires at the very top may not be provided as a septuagenarian.
“But, where and when they are with obvious evidence, they must be taken into account for purpose of reality.
“It is a job in our present situation where the team leader or captain of the team should be up and doing, outgoing inside and outside and speaking to the nation on almost daily basis.
“He must be visibly and as much as possible interactively, meeting his colleagues all over the world on behalf of Nigeria,” he said.
Obasanjo said that there were four major factors to watch out for in a leader as regards the 2023 general elections.
“They are what I call TVCP: Track record of ability and performance; Vision that is authentic, honest and realistic; Character and attributes of a lady and a gentleman, who are children of God and obedient to God.
“And Physical and mental capability with soundness of mind, as it is a very taxing and tasking assignment at the best of times and more so, it is at the most difficult time that we are,” he said.
The former president, however, rated the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, above other candidates ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Obasanjo explained that none of the presidential candidates could be called a saint, saying that when compared, in terms of knowledge, discipline and what they could offer, Obi has an edge.
He added that the Labour Party presidential candidate had gathered the great efforts required to stay focussed on the job.
According to him, this has made him to have an edge over others.