Open Letter To Distinguished Senator Ben Murray Bruce! – From NNPP
Dear Senator Ben Murray Bruce,
Re : It’s Time to Add Value to Nigeria’s Youths.
It is my pleasure to reply to your detailed, sensitising and instructive letter to us, the Nigerian youths as published in your “Ben Murray Bruce Making Common Sense” column in the prestigious THISDAY Newspaper dated Monday, November 7, 2016 and titled: “It’s Time to Add Value to Nigeria’s Youths”. I thank you so much sir for creating time to write such volume which sought to encourage us, protect our interest and prepare us for the tasks ahead despite your busy and tight schedules as a serving senator. I’m persuaded to believe you were prompted by your avuncular and empathetic disposition towards young people. You have by this singular act extended a great deal of honour and regard to Nigerian youths and given us sense of importance and belonging in the Nigerian project which has been eluding us over the years. This is what our hearts crave. I therefore had to take up my pen to reply in reciprocation of the honour and appreciation of your uncommon regard. Please accept my gratitude Sir!
Secondly, I would like to commend you on all your patriotic efforts to ensure local content and home grown technology are appreciated and patronised so that we as a nation can become self-reliant. I believe this is the essence of your laudable campaign “BuyNaijatoGrowtheNaira”. Of a truth Sir, the syndrome of preferring imported consumer products can at best put undue pressure on the Naira and consequently see its intractable depreciation.
Equally commendable is your common sense revolution which is spreading like wild fire and gaining popularity on daily bases especially among the youths. Common sense is of vital and paramount importance in leadership and governance. In fact, all it takes for us to understand that the Naira grows in strength when we consume what we produce and produce what we consume is COMMON SENSE! Unfortunately, our leaders have made us to believe that this phenomenon is not common after all, as virtually most consumer goods including common ones such as toothpicks, matches, clothing, rice and so on come from beyond our shores despite abundant natural, material and human resources. What an irony? What a paradox?
No nation can grow an economy driven by the consumption of imported products as is the case with Nigeria today. In other words, no consumer economy grows to formidability! That is why emerging economic powers like China, India and South Korea had to look inwards to enhance their production base with right protectionist policies in place so as to change from import economy status to export economy one. Negligence of this simple measure contributed much to our woes. Hence the ideal of the campaign (BuyNaijatoGrowtheNaira) as the surest way out of the woods!!
To commence in earnest, let me state it clearly that I concur completely with you on the issue of Federal Government’s proposal to procure a loan of $29.6 billion. Like you stated, I too have not been against securing foreign loans as long as it is geared towards the development of the nation in terms of economic building and not salaries or extraneous schemes. Otherwise we the youths could be left with a huge burden that will put us in perpetual bondage. Please Sir, relent not in sounding this note of caution so that the loan will be put to judicious use should they go ahead with the proposal. Nations like China and India who borrowed, invested their loans in their youths through massive industrialisation, micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME), human capacity building and entrepreneurial funding. These avenues ensured the regeneration of the loan. Today, those nations have emerged intimidating economic giants posing great threats to the west. If we must achieve same, then we must be ready to put our youths at the centre of the circle by investing in them just as Franklin Roosevelt — the 32nd president of American admonished-‘We cannot always build a future for our youth, but we can always build our youth for the future.’ So nation building is synonymous with youth building! When you build your youth, you build your nation!! The success of our youths during the era of YOUWIN lends credence. I wish the federal government would come up with a similar programme to boost youth entrepreneurship. It will surely make a positive impact on our economy. Therefore the bulk of the money should be spent on the youths. Anything short of that is tantamount to squandering their future.
Let me on a special note thank you so much for your indisputable and cogent assertion that we Nigerian youths have value and can compare to the best there is anywhere in the world. Our confidence has been renewed and beefed up thereby, at least for the fact that we have one of our leaders acknowledging our rare potentials!
It is indeed so inspiring that an amazing surgery on a foetus in the womb was performed by a Nigerian youth Dr. Oluyinka Olukoye. A feat that has never been done ever since the world began. He has indeed done us proud. The world should package him a Nobel prize for the rare feat.
Moreover, your experience at the made-in-Aba trade fair held in Abuja in February which you shared is worthy of note ( Big thanks to Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe for his support). I grew up in Aba and so am in a better position to tell about the technological prowess of Enyimba City. It may interest you to note that a lot including industrial machines and switchgear are indigenously manufactured in Aba. Do not forget that it was Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida who nicknamed Aba “The Japan of Africa”, during his official visit to that town as the military president of Nigeria. He was so overwhelmed by the level of technology he witnessed there. I bet you Sir, if our leaders can shun ethnic sentiment and give adequate attention to the ingenuity of that city, we would turn it into a technological hub of the continent and begin to boast of a technology based economy. To buttress the forgoing, let me refer to a portion in the editorial of vanguard newspaper 25th October 2010 about Aba thus “It is Nigeria’s leading fashion manufacturing hub, competing with Italy and France, especially in the areas of shoes and clothes. What gives the two countries the edge is Nigeria’s lack of enabling environment for improvement with basic infrastructure like electricity available in inadequate measures”. It is therefore, so shameful and a taboo that despite such potential in place, we still import ship-loads of ordinary tricycles from India today! To say the least, you are not wrong honourable senator when you said while concluding that “we are divided along ethnic line”. That is why we have an acre of diamonds and still go elsewhere in search of same. There is no reason why we should not have been ahead of India technologically if we had downplayed ethnicity.
Let me at this juncture advise you to visit Nnewi as well. Another technological wonderland! You will get drunk with amazement. They make products ranging from auto spare parts (both for vehicles and motorcycles) to car batteries, engine oil etc. This city in question is the manufacturing ground of the famous Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing (IVM). The first indigenous automobile manufacturing company in the continent of Africa. How I just wish government will lend support through grants to increase the capacity of that company as a pride of our nation. That step will contribute much to the building of our capacity.
Recall that American auto companies was on the verge of collapse before President Obama came in. To save them, he voted huge stimulus to the tone of 24.9 billion dollars to them. That was how American auto industries survived the post gulf war recession that hit the nation. I see Innoson company contributing much more to our GDP if government will act in the right direction. Moreover it will be a step in the right direction to make Innoson vehicles the nations official vehicles for public servants. It is so pathetic that our public servants prefer to cruise in Japanese SUVs when Indian expertriates make do with TATA motors products. Sir I must bear you witness that you have advocated that through your “Buy Naija to grow the Naira” campaign. In fact you posted the picture of Silverbird luxury bus made by Innoson auto company on your Facebook page. Moreover Sir, you made a promise to replace your official car with made-in-Nigeria brand of Innoson vehicle as part of your #BuyNaijaToGrowTheNaira campaign and as reported by vanguard news, you fulfilled it. This you also posted on your twitter handle thus “Dr Innoson Chukwuma has delivered my Innoson cars which I will now use as my official car. I paid for the cars with my personal funds and not government money”. What acts of patriotism by example! I must commend you for that Sir! I would therefore procure one for myself whenever resources are available for me as a show of same (patriotism)!
Come to .think of it, these products from IVM are strong, rugged and stoic. They compare favourably with those coming from Europe and Asia. There is no reason why we should not be proud of our own brand!
Some of our leaders are acting accordingly in this regard anyway and I must bear them witness. The former governor of Anambra state Peter Obi showed enthusiastic patronage to Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing company during his stint. In your twit on February 19, 2016, you disclosed he told you that he bought 1000 Innoson vehicles. In the same vein, the Rochas Okorocha led Imo State government also procured about 27 Innoson trucks for the 27 local governments of the state recently as well as the incumbent Anambra State government led by Chief Willie Obiano which purchased 5 additional Innoson specially made vehicles for the state command of Nigeria Police Force as I learnt from an online source. I must appreciate them for that and encourage others to follow suit.
Let me commend the Buhari led Federal Government for a certain step in the right direction. As reported by Vivian Gist Nigeria, an online blog, the vice president Prof Yemi Osinbajo during an inspection tour of the Innoson Vehicles Manufacturing Company at Nnewi disclosed that the Federal Government has adopted a policy to encourage, patronise and boost locally manufactured vehicles and as a result, had recently approved at the Federal Executive Council, the purchase of pick-up trucks for the Federal Road Safety Corps. We are now expecting them to match action to their words.
To say that the Nigerian youths are resilient is just stating the obvious. We have the capacity to harness our huge potentials to reach fulfilment in the face of adversity. Our exploits so far, both in the music and movie industries lend credence. Why won’t the Facebook legend Mark Zuckerberg come in search of Nigerian youths with relevant potentials? He had been so struck by our technological dexterity and so had no option. The irony is that what Zuckerberg saw from far away America, our elders could not see even in Nigeria. Little wonder our nation has been suffering much from brain drain over the years! Recently a famous American evangelist Benny Hinn appointed a Nigerian youthful singer Sinach as his worship leader wherever he would be staging a crusade. We have found our purpose and have come of age. Thanks to Murtala Muhammad who predicted it in 1976 as you made us to know.
Sir, the Nigerian youth by name Uzodimma Iweala who though read medicine but wrote the famous novel “Beast of no nation” did a great job. Mentioning him was so inspiring. It is so striking that some one born in 1982 can create such great work that centres on the Biafran war. But there are so many Uzodimmas among our youths who are struggling to give expressions to their huge ideas and imaginations. I know some of them. An average thinker should consider what our economy will look like if we can empower them in their various fields. If Nigerian youths can turn Nollywood to a 5 billion dollars industry contributing as much as 13% to our gross domestic product (GDP), with little or no government input, they can set the nation on a higher pedestal if government can identify fully.
Let me also acknowledge other Nigerian youths doing exploits in diaspora whom you mentioned such as Chuka Umunna. The British parliamentarian who is seen as the Obama of Britain. Who could imagine what the young man had told white Britons in his constituency that made them to look beyond his colour, preferring him to their fellow whites- The power of Nigerian youth!!
The next is Jelani Aliyu who is a guru in auto designing in America. According toanswerafrica.com, “Jelani Aliyu is the ingenious brain behind the “American Revolutionary” Chevrolet Volt. Currently he is the senior and lead exterior designer at General Motors”… I hail Nigerian youths!!!
While writing this reply, I had to carry out a little research about you to ascertain whether you were just trying to score a point or talking out of experience. I discovered that the later was the case. I was so amazed to discover that it was in 1980 when you were just 24 years old that you set up the famous and legendary Silverbird Group. When you consider the rare achievements of that company, you cannot but deduce that it can only take a youthful, creative mind to conceive such idea. A look at some of the numerous remarkable and land breaking achievements of Silverbird Group as documented in the group’s website will suffice: The first international standard mall, the revolutionisation of FM Radio in Nigeria by the setting up of Rhythm 93.7FM, the reinvention of the cinema culture with theatres spanning Lagos, Abuja, Port Harcourt and Accra Ghana and the production of the first and only black African Miss World in 2001 which refuted the age long fallacy and myth that beauty is the exclusive right of the white race. The group also contributed much quota to the revolution of international television broadcasting in Nigeria. The quintessential Silverbird television is an evidence.
Who could have believed that the tiny idea conceived by a boy at 24 would eventually blossom into a famous and prestigious multi billion naira business empire. Our .youths should be empowered to harness their God given potentials. It will surely benefit the nation. One good idea developed, can be of immense benefit especially in the area of job creation. The Silverbird Group in question has created not less than a thousand jobs as I learnt and developed so many talents. In fact, the impact of your empire, both nationally and internationally cannot be overemphasised.
Hence your voice should not be ignored! We must as a matter of urgency give attention to your clarion call. Yes, we must #BuyNaijaToGrowTheNaira! That indeed is an indisputable #CommonSense!!
I therefore commend your people of Bayelsa East Senatorial District for the right choice they made. They saw gold and went for it despite how deep they must dig! For higher service, they should not look elsewhere.
More so, the newspaper, Thisday that conveyed your letter was established in 1995 by Nduka Obaigbena. A 36 years old youth considered a Nigerian media mogul. The young Nduka brought innovation to newspaper publication by sound youthful creativity. Consequently the paper won the “newspaper of the year” award the same year it was set up and maintained the achievement for three consecutive years. Two years later, they became the first newspaper to introduce full colour printing- The innovative power of youth in action! Today, the newspaper has not less than 100, 000 copies in circulation on daily bases.
Sir it will interest you to note also that the females are not onlookers. Chimamanda Adichie, the internationally acclaimed novelist is doing great exploits in the literary world. Her novel ” Half of a Yellow Sun” which won the 2007 Orange Prize for Fiction is a phenomenal masterpiece! I’m baffled by how she was able to compose and professionally structure a spell binding story based on the Biafran war which she didn’t witness as she was not yet born. That could have been enabled by a fertile and proficient imagination! She has other works such as Purple Hibiscus and Americana to her credit. I can safely say she is a future Nobel laureate!
Another inspiring lady I will not fail to bring to your notice is Linda Ikeji. This lady rose from nothing to becoming the most successful blogger in Nigeria. Her famous blog lindaikejisblog.com is a beehive of activities generating millions of naira monthly. According to certain online sources,her net worth is put at 3.2 billion naira. Recently she took blogging to the next level by launching a full blown social website www.lindaikejisocial.com. The social website in question is growing by leaps and bounds and so set to be another goldmine. I read that a certain investor offered to invest about $2 billion dollars into the new website which she turned down.
I have already signed up and got an account at least for solidarity sake. As Americans popularised Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and so on, we should also popularise ours. So I encourage our youths to sign up for their own accounts in Linda Ikeji Social. What impresses me about her is that though she has got beauty to her side, she refused to toe the line of least resistance and still made it big. She just created dignity for herself. I think she is a pride to womanhood and the youths in general. When Forbes deemed it right to honour and appreciate women participation in business, Linda appeared in their August 2016 edition of Forbes Africa Magazine as Nigeria’s highest paid blogger. What a prestigious achievement? Her blog has also won other awards including Best daily read, Nigerian Blog of the Year and Best Entertainment Blog. She is a kind of people that deserve national award because she has made a model and inspiration to women!
At this juncture, I must join you to express worry and concern over the kind of verbal wars that go on among our youths especially on social media. It is so unfortunate that we have allowed those who failed the nation to divide us along ethic, religious and sectional lines thereby ruining our future when their own children are enjoying the best of governance in the western world. We fight their wars while they feed fat on our destinies! What baffles me more is that you end up exposing yourself to their tirades and abuses as you advocate for them. Little wonder a certain American author and motivational speaker Jim Rhone observed “It is so funny that those you are willing to take the bullet for are even those behind the trigger”. I will not be surprised at the barrage of vituperations that will great this rejoinder. I will not be deterred either!
I’m of the opinion that we Nigerian youths close every rank and unite so we can make a formidable force and increase our bargaining power. I have used my online routine platform ” Leadership Troubleshooting ” to inform our youths about the fact that we control about 60% of our society as you corroborated trying to make them realise that we can leverage on that strength to decide who goes where! Any day we realise this and act accordingly, the much touted youth marginalisation would become a thing of the past.
In fact, I share the notion that youths should be given a chance in governance in the spirit of equity and fairness. We are passionate to serve our father land in any capacity. We believe we can! The elders should perish the myth that the youths are not ready to govern. I thank you so much for your response to those in the school of thought that upholds such baseless and unfounded myth when you asked them when Nigeria made the most economic and social progress since independence. It’s good you reminded them for emphasis that, that was when youths held sway-The days of Yakubu Gowon, Murtala Muhammad and Olusegun Obasanjo all of whom were young people. In this dispensation, we have seen impressive performance by youthful leaders such as Donald Duke, Godswill Akpabio, to mention but a few. Just last year 2015, a 20-year-old girl, Mhairi Black from West of Scotand was elected into the British parliament. They know the youths can make a difference!
As a matter of fact, the youths will do better and achieve more in governance than the elders because they are stronger and more resilient which is a rare antidote to certain challenges associated with the task of governance. Let’s realise that the most productive stage in life is the youth age. So maximum productivity calls for young people. Most epoch making achievements in this world were done by youths. Lee Kuan Yew became the first prime minister of Singapore in 1959 at the youthful age of 36 and was able to transform that poor nation from a third world status to a first world one in a space of 15 years without any natural resource and arable land unlike Nigeria. What a rare exploit?-The youthful gumption at work!! This is not to suggest that the elders should quit! But for the records, we are ready to govern! Even the United Nations Secretary- General, Ban Ki- moon observed same. During the 2016 United Nations International Youth Day Event in Lagos,.the outgoing UN Scribe said in his message “Youths could solve problems of abject poverty, ostentatious wealth, hunger and food wastes”. What else therefore is governance?
Another myth that needs to be bursted is “Nigerian youths are not interested in farming”. We are interested in Agriculture. In fact there are so many known to me who are doing small scale poultry farming, fish farming, snail farming, piggery etc. There are so many others who are ready to begin but for paucity of start-up package.
It is government that is rather not interested in youth going into farming as they have not made it attractive to them through the provision of grants and enabling environment unlike in other climes like Australia where government has put in place adequate infrastructure and other incentives that enable the sector to thrive. For instance, recently I read about a certain youth, Akinyemi Oluwagbenga in Sunday Vanguard newspaper of September 11, 2016. Akinyemi is an agricultural researcher and founder of Bell Apple Wealth Ventures. The young man is making giant strides in the cultivation of bell apple. The researcher revealed that bell apple cultivation can thrive in Nigerian and has huge investment prospects. According to him it takes about three years for the tree to mature to fruiting stage and harvest which comes twice in a year can yield up to one thousand fruits per harvest. What a gold mine? He however lamented that not enough is being done concerning financing and that is not encouraging. If government can support the passionate researcher cum farmer with a grant of say 5 million naira, his morale would be boasted and he can create multiple jobs in that sector. Moreover, other youths will get motivated.
However, politicians believes that we can only do well in political thuggery, violence and assassination. What an embarrassment? That is why they buy guns and other weapons and hard drugs for the youths instead of creating ethical jobs for them. This act of dehumanisation affects the self esteem of these youngsters. At times I begin to wonder if what we spent huge resources learning at the tertiary institutions are violence and thuggery! All the money spent on those illegal weapons can establish our youths in various trades. Sir, if possible, help and echo it that they should give us jobs and not guns!!!
Our youths on their own part should shun any acts capable of ruining their future and refuse to be used by any politician. Those using them cannot use their own children. In fact their children are overseas enjoying the best of education, comfortable environment, adequate health care delivery and peace. This is the height of deceit! The youths should therefore close ranks and put their demographic weight to good use as 2019 beckons. We shouldn’t take laws into our hands but we should our collective destinies!
Indeed my visionary Senator, you made a lot of common sense in your letter. But the most striking was your advocacy for youth empowerment when you said “Nigeria has had big dreams for ages. It’s time we wake up and accomplish those big dreams. It starts by empowering our youths”. If you ask me it is the high point and nitty gritty of your letter as it proffers solutions to all the problems you pointed out bedevilling Nigerian youths and the nation at large. Government, corporate bodies and concerned individuals should set up skill acquisition centres and professional institutions for youth capacity building. This will go a long way towards making the youths adequately employable and raising skilled artisans, technologists and professionals from among the youths. There should also be financial empowerment schemes in place. Sir, many of our youths are replete with fecund ideas that can make them contribute a good deal of quota to our economy. But they lack access to finance. Hence the ideas are there laying fallow and dormant. Let us remember the days of YOUWIN scheme and it’s attendant positive impact. (Repetition is for emphasis). Government should float a similar scheme and use it to empower our youths for the development of our SME sector as I advised earlier!
I do not subscribe to the policy of N5000 for 25, million jobless youths per month. The intention is so good, no doubt-to alleviate the sufferings of millions of unemployed youths- but the effect will leave much to be desired as it does not have the capacity to achieve its aim. I stand to be corrected! Five thousand naira cannot keep an average youth up beyond one week. So we would have been seeing about 125 billion naira, plus logistics going to waste on monthly bases. This will amount to 1.5 trillion naira annually.
But if this money is well channelled, it can empower hundreds of thousands of youths in MSME. With time majority of them will grow and absorb more youths. By this measure we can beat the recession and rebuild our economy formidable. If federal government can borrow my idea, I believe they will achieve success as we will witness boom once again.
Massive industrialisation is another way of empowering our youths. It has the capacity to create jobs so our teeming population of unemployed youths can heave a sigh of relief. Nations that attach much premium to industrialisation don’t complain about high unemployment rate.
Sir, there is a high degree of unemployment rate in the country. In fact it has assumed an alarming proportion and if nothing is done, it can degenerate and aggravate our distress! This is one of the major reasons for crimes and social disturbances we are grappling with today ( I do not justify crime no matter the reason). We can’t forget in a hurry how recently, about 700 thousand people applied for police jobs with only 10 thousand vacancies. That also reminds me of the 16 youths who lost their lives in 2014 during the immigration job test that saw about 500 thousand applicants scrambling for just 5000 job vacancies. How our youths had to lose their lives just for opting to serve their nation. I can’t understand the rationale!!!!
Sir I commend federal government for creating 200 thousand jobs recently as I read in our national dailies. That is a step in the right direction. Please extend our gratitude. I would that Mr President prioritise the gesture, so we could heave a sigh of relief in future. Job creation is one of the significant things any government is expected to give much attention to. It has a way of discouraging youths from engaging in lawless acts. We appreciate that!
With no malice afore thought against anyone, I regret to say that lack of vision on the part of most of our leaders is what is responsible for all these anomalies. Once there is no vision, leaders resort to embezzlement and squander mania. Hence things go awry. The bible captures this scenario well in proverbs 29:18 thus “Where there is no vision, the people perish …….” Vision is a crucial factor in leadership. Any leader that lacks it cannot achieve much even if he has a trillion dollars at his disposal. Vanguard news paper on 25th march 2015, quoted EFCC as saying that about $20 trillion had been stolen from the treasury by leaders who had access to the nations money between 1960 and 2015. That is incredible! However, if that is anything to go by, then my question is where is the reflection of that huge and monumental amount? It is no where to be found because those who piloted the affairs of our nation lacked vision. It is better to have vision without financial resources than to have the later without the former. Otherwise the resources would be abused. Myles Munro of the blessed memory made it clear when he said “When the purpose of a thing is not know, abuse is inevitable”. You can’t know the purpose without vision.
Recall that I made reference to Lee Quan Yew earlier who was able to transform Singapore from a third world nation to a first world one within a short space of fifteen years without natural resource and fertile land for agriculture. How then was he able to perform the miracle?…Power of vision!! But for fifty six years down the line Africa’s most populous nation is still wallowing in abject poverty, high rate of unemployment, high mortality rate, epileptic power supply, poor health care delivery, erratic economy and so on- effects of lack of vision. May God come to our rescue Sir!
All hope is not lost anyway! Our nation can still make it out of the quandaries. All it will take is shunning ethnic and religious sentiments and unwholesome partisan persuasions and form an economic think tank of professionals with impressive track records. God has blessed Nigeria with economic icons with international recognition. So we are not supposed to be in this predicament. People like Dr. Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, Prof Charles Soludo, Dr Arumma Otteh, Profs Pat Utomi and Oby Ezekwesili to mention a few have proven their mettle and can still do it again. Unfortunately, we don’t know the value of what we have. But those who know, have been poaching them from us. While the World Bank has taken four of our gurus namely Oby Ezekwesili, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Arunma Oteh and recently Sandie Okoro ( although Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and Oby Ezekwesili are former staff members),Trump has appointed a Nigerian, Bayo Ogunlesi into his 16-man economic advisory team and Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala got two international appointments as the chair of the Board of the Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation, GAVI, as well as senior advisor to Lazard, the 167-year-old global investment firm as reported bydailyafricagist.com. There is no how these authorities would come together and cannot proffer solutions that will get us out of the woods. I only made a #commonsense!
Application of this common sense was the secret of the successes recorded by Obasanjo’s regime. Obasanjo esteemed national interest above any other considerations in other to give the nation the best he could. Hence Baba shopped for efficient hands without minding where they come from. Delivery was the watchword! So people like Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Oby Ezekwesili and Charles Soludo were discovered and a proficient economic team emerged. We eventually secured debt cancellation and consolidation of the banking sector. Consequently, our economy waxed stronger and everyone enjoyed it. It was no other than Obasanjo that enjoyed the credit. Baba understood the principle of leadership- delegation and supervision! When you delegate the right squad they will succeed and you will succeed with them. The wrong squad will inevitably crash leaving you a failure!
Similar strategy played out in 1933 when Franklin Roosevelt had his stint as the 32nd President of America. He inherited the great depression that hit that nation in 1929 when their stock market which had been on the upward trend for a decade nosedived and crashed. The disaster was so horrendous that banks failed, the nations money supply diminished and companies were plunged into bankruptcy and began to fire their workers in droves. In fact, by 1932, one of the gloomiest years of the distress, America lost one quarter of her workforce. What did Roosevelt do? He faced the situation squarely and swung into action as he assembled experts who helped him to come out with a concept they call “the New Deal”. The new deal began to stabilise the economy and provide jobs and relief to the suffering masses. Restoration of the crashed American economy became his priority. Of course, no government can claim to have succeeded if it failed in economy. So over the next eight years, he battled the monster and eventually prevailed. Thus, America was not caught pants down when the second world war broke out effectively in 1939. Of course they led the allied forces to victory. I would therefore that we borrow the New Deal concept. #Commonesense!
Sir, on my own part, I’m passionately resolved to protect the interest of my fellow youths. In my own little way, I have been committedly involved in youth advocacy. While I dissuade them from engaging in evil acts, I persuade them to pursue noble courses that will bring fulfilment to their lives and brighten their future. I am so optimistic that God will supply me with resources that will enable me implement my golden ideas aimed at youth transformation. To be candid with you Sir, our youths are endowed with wonderful talents and potentials and are willing to harness them according to my findings! The only challenge we have is that they are not engaged meaningfully due to government’s insensitivity to their plight which portends a grave threat to the future of the country. It is no more news that about 80% of them are in this situation. If you get to football betting centres across the country and see a teeming population of youths depending on chance, the Senator Ben Bruce I know will lose his sleep!
To conclude Honourable Senator Sir, I want to reiterate that this reply is to commend and express my great regard for you as an advocate of youth empowerment and good governance which I stand for. The course is indeed a noble one. It would therefore be expedient you raise like minds who share your passion so they can join in echoing your voice. It is also to let you know that your advocacy and campaign are not going unnoticed but really making positive impacts. For instance, recently the Nigerian Army procured 50, 000 pairs of footwear from local manufacturers in Aba. That’s a good one! I wish others would borrow leaves from you and that Mr President- who is seeking ways to fix Nigeria-will buy into these noble ideas and concepts which you have been releasing. Of course I could deduce that though of the opposition, you still want Mr President to succeed even as I do. That is why you have been sharing all these leadership clues and hints. If you ask me, he should get you closer! But in any case, do not rest on your laurels. You must soldier on even in the face of opposition and harassment. Remember, the reward for hard work is more work! You have so far empowered so many youths through your foundation ( The Ben Bruce Foundation). Please let the good work continue! May I serve you this food for thought: We the youths are identifying those into whose hands we can entrust our future and destinies and you are one of them! That connotes you have exonerated yourself from the blame of posterity!!…Therefore, I make bold to advise: Let Nigerian governments at all levels listen to Honourable Senator Ben Murray Bruce!!!
Emmanuel Nzenwa (Engr)
Governorship Candidate, 2015 (Imo State)
New Nigeria People’s Party
President Muhammadu Buhari
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo
Sen Bukola Saraki
Sen Ike Ekweremmadu
Hon. Yakubu Dogara
Hon. Yusuf Sulaiman
Sen Godswill Akpabio
Sen Enyinnaya Abaribe
Gov Rocha Okorocha
Gov Willie Obiano
Gov Ayodele Fayose
Gov Ezenwo Nyesom Wike
Gov Aminu Waziri Tambuwal
Fmr President Olusegun Obasanjo
Fmr President Goodluck Jonathan
Fmr Vice President Atiku Abubakar
Fmr President Namadi Sambo
Sen David Mark
Sen Dino Melaye
Hon Emeka Ihedioha
Dr Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala
Dr Arunma Oteh
Dr Sandie Okoro
Prof Chukwuma Soludo
Prof Oby Ezekwesili
Prof Pat Utomi
Mr Innocent Chukwuma
Fmr Gov Peter Obi
Fmr Gov Donald Duke
Fmr Gov Achike Udenwa
Fmr Gov Ikedi Ohakim
Dr Oluyinka Olutoya
Femi Fani Kayode
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Dr Apeh Omede