A Dreamer’s Tale

Sowe are being called upon to get Nigeria out of this quagmire she’s in now. You know that popular phrase we heard a lot when we were younger, ‘Children are the leaders of tomorrow’? You know how we got older and wondered when the mantle of leadership will be passed to us? Wonder no more, for the time is at hand, though, not on the political front exactly.

Just some minutes ago, I listened to a radio programme where the presenters called on Nigerian youths to man up to the helm of affairs and be the leaders of tomorrow. A Twitter message that was read on the programme asked how the youths of today are expected to be leaders of today when the youths of the 70s who were political leaders then are still at the helm of affairs. The presenters attested to the validity of that question and how hard it is for present youths to head big political positions. Absolutely, youths are in the political race, but are not heard of because their positions are little. One of them went on to add that there are other sectors of the economy where youths should engage in. This brings me to the body of my article.

Since I was at home the previous day, I listened to numerous radio programmes (my Dad loves listening to the radio, I think mainly to use it as background noise) and most of the programmes were focused on how the Nigerian youths should be patriots, entrepreneurs and leaders. It might be that this had been happening before now, but I just wasn’t aware. Yes, they’ve always said we should be entrepreneurs, but it seems it is a recurrent theme, recently.

As a job seeker, I got links to numerous job openings and some of these jobs are shitty paying jobs. I worked for a while in one of these available jobs, but I didn’t wait for a month before I left. I wasn’t alone as my co-workers too left. The employer reduced the salary we agreed upon and took the time that suit him to pay us.

You know those elusive big paying graduate entrance jobs? They exist, but few, compared to our numbers. I’m still claiming to be a fresh graduate after the youth service. Not to go into my job seeking experiences for now, just know that I’m giving up on it. I never wanted to work for someone initially. I am one of those people that people know will be an entrepreneur, but as most of us do, we always complain about funding. I wanted to work for a year, save up money to further my education.  While still working, I would set up one or two of my business ideas from my salary.

Now that the best laid plans are not panning out, I’ve decided to come back to my business and visit the banks and see if I can get a loan from one. Now, if I had been born into a wealthy family completed with wonderful connections, I most probably won’t have gone looking for jobs in the first instance. I know numerous people who have gone through this route. They are hardworking people who are making it now, but the connections and money helped tremendously. I don’t know them one-on-one, but most are even younger than I.

Some articles I read recently said funding isn’t the problem. I want to say if it was that easy then, we won’t be having problems, our economy should have been thriving by now. There are avenues now available, but I don’t think they are enough. That aside, after our dear leaders have messed up the economy and driven it aground, they now remember the youths and how they should start up businesses. They are now trying to come up with ways to help youths with entrepreneural acumen. I believe we youths should actually be given a moment to tell them ‘ntoyi’ just as the way I want agriculture to do that. After running after the black gold, Nigeria is now back to wooing her first lover. We seem to be a nation of misplaced priority. More avenues should have been placed into helping the youths set up businesses before now.

I tried looking into how much it will cost to have a courier business registered and renewed and I just ran away. The summation could kill a penniless dreamer like me. To those calling on us, yes, it’s the way; yes, it is possible, but no, it’s not easy. We need you to help us both financially and any other way conceivable. Your encouragement and advice are needed. We need more actions   and less talking from the governments.

Disclaimer: This is just the opinion of the author based on information at the moment of penning the article. If you have a contradictory opinion, please make use of the comment box. If you have anything to add or whatever that can benefit both the author and readers, please, don’t be shy to share. No one is an island of knowledge; we learn everyday. Help others in whatever capacity you can. I add again that it is just an opinion. Thank you.

Written by Adeniyi Oluwaseyi Irene

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