Thursday, December 10, 2009

A mind divided

I’m staring at this blank sheet in front of me, totally lost for words on what to write on “Dis Generation”. Do not get me wrong, we have not exhausted the issues facing us. However, the rate at which these issues are increasing is what seems overwhelming tonight.

The discussion I had with a gentleman in the D.C. subway sounds like a topical issue. This young man decided to stay off the Nigerian shores because he was told by one of his teachers that the only way to succeed in Nigeria is to be “corrupt”. He does not have that drive he says, so he has decided to remain in Diaspora until he hears that a revolution has taken place to “purge” Nigeria of that spirit. In his words “until the corrupt leaders in all the sectors are killed, Nigeria will not change”. I wonder if he means that literally. No time to confirm. The train stops and he alights at his destination, leaving me to mull over his words.

I received some alarming messages from an acquaintance back home, some are prayers, and some are wishes. “Is President Yar’adua dead?” I asked. “Not yet” is his blunt reply. “Okay, I will join you in the prayer”. I mean, the prayer for our President to get well soon. It amazes me how sometimes we criticize our government leaders, without putting into cognizance the complexity of the country that wear out their good intentions. I am not supporting our President’s slow progress but checking on the nature of our “public complaints commission” that is geared towards finding a quick-fixer. Even President Obama will testify to the difficulty in serving a complex Nation- he has grown some grey hair within this short period of being President of the acclaimed number one country in the world.

Meanwhile, there is a call to all Africans in diaspora to act constructively by contributing their quota towards re-building the continent. No country must be left behind. While Nigerian-born Junior Kanu is championing different campaigns for his “Solving Africa” movement in USA, my colleague, Abdu Mohamed in Tanzania broadcasts his message, “I’m now working hard to start a new organization called “WAKE UP AFRICA”, which will work to help African youth and other People to sustain and appreciate their cultures and Value and not think western cultures are the best.”

I feel dissatisfied with this entry tonight. What I intended writing is on the importance of “Volunteering” for development. Some say the Nigerian education system sucks because it doesn’t equip students with life skills to give them a competitive advantage. And I say, why not explore volunteerism/Internship as a platform to sharpen the limited knowledge acquired in the Ivory Tower, until the much anticipated education reform is implemented?

Source of blank sheet of paper photo: Mark78_xp on flickr


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