RESPONSE TO THE LAZY YOUTH STATEMENT MADE BY PRESIDENT MUHAMMADU BUHARI.
FULL TEXT OF A PRESS CONFERENCE ADDRESSED BY THE NATIONAL PUBLICITY SECRETARY OF THE YOUNG PROGRESSIVE PARTY, COMRADE EGBEOLA OLAWALE MARTINS ON APRIL 20, 2018 AT THE NATIONAL SECRETARIAT, ABUJA IN RESPONSE TO THE LAZY YOUTH STATEMENT MADE BY PRESIDENT MUHAMMADU BUHARI.
All protocols duly acertained.
1. The recent statement made by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Commonwealth Business Forum in Westminster that Nigerian youths just want to sit down and do nothing, banking on the notion that Nigeria is an oil rich nation is to say the least the most unkind statement ever to made about Nigerian youth by any President either living or dead.
2. We belief that despite the obvious challenges and harsh socio-economic environment caused by the misgovernance of our leaders, Nigerian youths remain the most productive when compared to their counterparts around the world who have far better conducive environment to thrive and maximize their full potentials.
3. For a country ranked 152 out of 188 countries in the Human Development Index (HDI), which is a composite statistics for measuring how citizens are fairing in terms of education, per capital income and life expectancy, it is an aberration for a President who in the past three years have done nothing to improve on this rating to publicly berate same set of people who are only victims of his inaction.
4. Also, the statement that “a lot of our youths haven’t been to school and they are claiming that Nigeria is an oil producing country, therefore, they should sit and do nothing and get housing, healthcare, education for free” is hypocritical and an admission of failure from a President who only recently allocated a paltry 7.04% and 3.96% of the 2018 budget to education and health respectively.
5. May we remind Mr. President that few months back, these army of “sit and do nothing” Nigerian youths through their intellectual ingenuity not only attracted the attention of Mark Zuckerberg who is the 5th richest man in the world but also brought him to the shores of Nigeria and that singular visit in appreciation of what our youths are doing in the area of ICT made him invested over $100m to help develop our rich youthful human capital, a strategic resource that the APC government has deleiberately refused to either identify or invest in.
6. It is a very sad commentary when foreigners such as Bill Gates and Mark Zukerberg who have both invested in excess of $1.6b in Nigeria developing human capital understands, appreciates and believe so much in the enormous potentials of the Nigerian youths far and above their President.
7. If President Muhammadu Buhari is looking for “sit and do nothing”, mentally lazy and unproductive people, he need not look any further as they are all in his cabinet. Mr. President should be reminded that his intellectually lazy, myopic and unproductive economic team not too long ago led the nation in and out of recession, helped to multiply poverty, increased inflation and unemployment and only recently presented to the nation a flawed Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) that places less premium on human capital development which is the future.
8. If the present APC government cannot add value to the Nigerian youth, they should atleast leave us where and how they met us rather than further demoralizing, demeaning and insulting us at every given opportunity before the international community.
9. May we on behalf of the teeming hardworking, resilient, vibrant and tolerant Nigerian youths tell Mr. President and members of the international community that his opinion is not a true reflection of the character of majority of the very hardworking youths of Nigeria who despite all odds have continued to add value to the nation.
10. We therefore demand the withdrawal of this statement and an unreserved apology by Mr. President to the teeming youths of Nigeria.
11. Conclusively, all Nigerian youth should see this latest unguided statement and many more made in time past as an affront on our collective will, which must be challenged with our PVC come 2019 by being a part of the Young Progressive Party, a movement that places premium on our rich and youthful human capital resource above all other resorces.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria and thanks for coming.
Comrade Egbeola Olawale Martins
National Publicity Secretary.