Home opinion CHALLENGES FACE BY YOUTH IN NIGERIA By: Akinroye Abdulazeez (Aries)


Mohandas K.Ghandi, the father of Indian nation once says, “The things that will destroy the world are: politics without principle; pleasure without conscience; wealth without work; knowledge without character; business without morality; science without humanity and worship without sacrifice”.

The theory that man is a product of his society is not far from the truth as the process of individual character development derives a great influence from the values of the society in question (Albinus, 2012)The way in which a nation defines her youths is related to the objective conditions and realities that exist on the ground. That is why nations use different parameters and variables in defining their youths.

In Nigeria, youth according to Mofoluwawo (2010) comprises all young persons of ages 17 to 30 who are citizens of the Federal Republic ofNigeria.

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This category represents the most active, volatile and yet the most vulnerable segment of the population socially,economically and emotionally. The youths can also be referred to as the younger generation in any society that are in the period of adolescence and one below the age of 40 years.

Youths have been placed on a scale of impoverishment which has affected their capacity to reason critically as young people in the business of developing the country as a result of increasing rates of poverty and unemployment in the country (Alimba, et al 2010).

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This was further worsening by the nature of the education that is being provided for them. There is also the problem of parental ineffectiveness in the education and moral up bringing of the youths as a result of unfavourable economic environment caused by poverty (Mofoluwawo 2010).

Many youths because of family problem find it difficult to procure their basic needs like food, clothing, education etc. that can ensure their healthy living and development.

Youth’s inability to have these basic needs has pushed some of them to join the gang of armed robbers, hired assassins, political thuggery, drug pushers and the like to endanger themselves.

Youths in their bid to pass examination or get employment by all means have turned to professional prostitutes and many of them have contacted HIV/AIDS or other sexually transmitted diseases like syphilis, gonorrhea. (Mofoluwawo 2010). Many Nigerian youths who suppose to be leaders of tomorrow have died prematurely while many of them become useless instead of becoming useful to themselves and the nation at large.

Nigeria youths have been demoralized, incapacitated and render unproductive.

The ineffectiveness of the educational system and the bashing and deflating power of the society have impacted negatively on the youths to the extent that they are aimless (Alimba et al 2010).

Youths have been involved in many things regardless of the nature of the task. That is, they are available to as many that are willing to give them “chop money” to nsustain themselves even at the detriment to their lives. It is quite pathetic today that those within age bracket of 25-39 years have travelled oversea through the desert in search of greener pasture.

The reason is because the government neither given them needed attention nor care for them to be effective and efficient in contributing actively to the building of the nation (Mofoluwawo et al, 2012)

Hence instead of producing thinking and objective human beings, the educational system produces many fearful and uncritical citizenry that are also selfish and indifferent to public affairs (Falade 2008).

Through socio-cultural value regeneration, Nigerian youths who are leaders of tomorrow could be caught young and mould so that Nigeria will have a set of rebranding leaders in the future.Nigerian schools and homes should aim at developing in the citizens the spirit of effective citizenship and loyalty to the nation.

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