by Engr. Marcus Adetoye Adedini.
There is an alarming dearth of young talent in the present politics of Nigeria. Youths should be given the opportunity to prove themselves by making politics accessible to them. The right balance of young talent and experienced politicians can lead to the cleaning of politics,and can restore the public faith in the political system.
It is ostensible that, young people(youths) has more zeal towards the betterment of the society. They tend to be more enthusiastic, energetic,flexible, and equipped with fresh innovations and ideas.
It is a common knowledge that, the advocacy for youth Involvement in politics has taken a geometric progression. Although, most youths have always been in politics, especially at the time of reform movements. Most of these young people are into informal politics like social movements, pressure groups etc, rather than formal politics(Joining of a political party).
It is very essential for youths to be more involved in formal politics. Policies affecting youths can be framed by young people themselves, who most probably can feel the contemporary problems young people are facing. The Involvement of youths in politics would not only guarantee inclusiveness, but would slowly erase the negative perceptions on politics from the minds of young people.
It is crystal clear that, ideals and ideas often dominate the commitment of young people to their political party. When youths are involved in politics, it provides them the platform to acquire experience. Such experience would teach them tolerance, and the ability to have realistic vision.
Youth Involvement in politics, would furnish the young people with the opportunity of choosing their leaders. Not only that. It would also provide them the basic tools to determine who leads them.
According to Octavia Buttler, he says”Choose your leaders with wisdom and forethought. To be led by a coward is to be controlled by all that the coward fears. To be led by a fool is to be led by the opportunist who control the the fool. To be led by a thief is to offer up your most precious treasures to be stolen. To be led by a tyrant is to sell yourself and those you love into slavery.”
As a way of encouraging youths participation in politics, reservations for youths should be created in the political parties, and in the parliament as well. Political participation of youths should be beyond mere casting of votes. Young people must be involved in the process of elections as election observers, poll station workers etc.
It would not be anyway out of place for youths to be given the opportunity to visit the parliament or do internship in the parliament.
A machinery should be put in place by political parties to create political awareness among students in Colleges of Education, Technical Schools, Polytechnics, Universities etc. Above all,they should be encouraged to participate in politics.
Student wings in political parties should be established and be given commensurate strength and priority. Political skills acquisition and training should be provided by the experienced politicians to the young politicians. The young politicians too must possess the zeal to learn from the experienced hands.
Engr.Marcus Adetoye Adedini(MBA,COREN,MNSE,MNICE) is a Chartered Civil Engineer and a Native of Ife in Osun State.He is aspiring for the position of House of Representatives for Ife Federal Constituency, Osun State,on the platform of PDP in 2019.