Former Nigeria President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo has asked the youths whether they are prepared to take over the leadership of the country as the age at which Nigerians can contest Presidential election has been lowered by the Senate.
Obasanjo asked, at the Youth Governance Dialogue, organized to mark this year’s International Youth Day in Abeokuta, Ogun State: “the point is this – how are you prepared? Are you really prepared?
“You should engage in things that will bring about unity and integration. You see yourselves as Nigerians and one family instead of pursuing things that could divide the country.”
The programme was organized by the Youth Development Centre, an arm of the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library(OOPL), Abeokuta.
The former President feared that the major inhibition to youths taking over the leadership of the country is the lack of moral values that had been eroded the society today compared to what obtained in the 50s and the 60s.
He maintained that sound moral values are the necessary ingredients required for leadership position, adding that the nation is in a dire need of leaders who are academically and spiritually sound.
He appealed to the youths to stop complaining, moaning and agonizing, but to get ready to fit into elective offices as there were moves now to lower the age into positions of the President, Governor and National Assembly.
“I joined politics from the top. The only position I contested for in Nigeria is the Presidency, but I had track record of achievements which led to that.
“Nobody will choose you, you have to choose yourself. Why should you have to become president at the age of 40? Why can’t you become president at the age of 35? Why can’t you become president at the age of 30?
“General Gowon became Head of State at 33. I became Head of State at 39. And it is because of my track record, and thanks to Abacha (late Gen. Sani Abacha) for putting me in jail.
“Those were the reasons why I have opportunity to come back as elected President of Nigeria.” [myad]