Int’l Youth Day: are we still leaders of tomorrow?

The popular axiom, “The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow” has generated so much controversy such that as youth with so much anticipation, we grew up believing the saying that the youths are the leaders of tomorrow as a promise of hope and some sort of assurance of a better tomorrow.

However, whether it’s true or ambiguous, the underlying message of the axiom imposes a responsibility on essentially two parties – the youths who are the leaders of tomorrow and the adults who are the leaders of today.

X-raying the unfair sidelining of the youths over the years, it is not out place to clamor for a new system of government called ‘youth-o-cracy’ – a government of the people, by the youths and for the people but sadly, our leaders of yesterday are still voraciously clinging on to the baton of power, leaving us to wonder when exactly is the future going to arrive for the youths.

The youths of any nation can be likened to a fire, creeping forward a spark at first, then growing into a flame and “boom” brightening into a blaze. Youths are the building blocks of every nation. The stronger the youth of a country, the more developed that country.

Most significantly, the UN’s annual International Youth Day is a reminder that young people around the world are often relegated to the sidelines and excluded from having a say in key decision-making process that will affect them.

The leadership cadre across African countries is filled with aged politicians who are of the notion that nation building is their exclusive right and as such youth should not be given a chance. Perhaps, their stand explains why youths are said to be leaders of tomorrow which is yet to arrive.

If we are to solve the most pressing issues of our time, we need to tap into the dynamism of the youths and young social entrepreneurs who are disrupting inertia with exceptional innovation and creativity. The youth make the biggest demographic bracket of every nation, therefore empowering them is the logical option.

At this junction, It is time for the youths to stop seeing themselves as too young. We all have something. In a society different strata and groups of people live; such as young, old, rich and poor; the most important and significant proxy of a society which plays a decisive role is the youth and fresh generation of that society

The youths need to understand that life is not just a series of calculations and a sum total of statistics. It is about experience and sacrifice. It is something more complex. it’s about participation, contribution and making-a-difference

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