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The blame is not on the one who does not accept advice. Rather, it is on the one who presents it inappropriately

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Saturday, 19 May 2012

Oh My North 2!!


Written by penabdul

With all echoes of humility, my emotional yet timely and factual outburst on the state of the North, nay Nigeria as a whole made a popular read. Sadly we are yet to see any tangible road map from those in the positions of power, influence and authority that will take the region, nay the entire country out of its quagmire.

Many Nigerians of non-northern origin sympathize with what has dominated the atmosphere of most northern states in recent years. Yet, they put the blame on our past leaders and justifiably so, who (un)fortunately happen to be mostly of northern origin

But as progressives, we need solutions to our most disturbing reality not mere words and flowery speech that have done and are doing nothing other than creating a clear vacuum of actions. The harsh reality that stares at us today is that of the absence of economic, educational and leadership prowess. Unfortunately, the older generation of the so called northern elites are still living under the illusion of political relevance least forgetting that they established their political empire when most of them were in their thirties and forties. So it’s time to give way for a more vibrant educated youth population to make the needed ethical re orientation..

The zeal, the charisma, the passion and the disposition of youthful age was a major factor on the part of those second to third generations of Nigeria that helped them in establishing their political and financial empires.

Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa of blessed memory on BBC overseas Hausa service in 1945 said; "In our view we have in the North come to the point where legitimate means must be given to the educated members of the younger generation to express their ideas." (Trevor Clark: A Right Honorable Gentleman: The life and Times of Alhaji Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa; page 69). This is a clear indication that even the generation that we revered so much today identified the role of educated youths in nation building and why they should form part of decision making that affects the lives of people.

The natural question is, where are the privileged educated younger generation of the north today? What has the older generation that constitutes the northern elites of today put in place to raise the percentage of the educated northern youths? When you really make a sincere effort to list down the name of influential men in your locality against the number of youths they ought to have aided financially to pursue their academic or even business dreams, you will soon realize that you are actually making a list that might send you to an emotional coma and a state of psychological despondency.

As an optimist and a realist, I'm very much aware of the limitations of human capabilities and our fallibility, hence we call upon those northern elites that have been tested with positions, power, influence and wealth to turn around and embrace every child as their own and invest in their education because when that population is educated, we will see less people ready to destroy innocent souls and infrastructures meant for collective benefit.

What about the vast arable land we have in the North? Are we judging Allah on one thing He has tested us with or are we judging Him on the many natural and human resources He has blessed us with? Is it a sin for us to invest in agriculture, tap the natural resources in our midst which will in essence create job for the impoverished population? I guess, if really our 'leaders' are true statesmen and selfless people, then for God's sake we need an economic revolution in the north.

Our emirs, who are seen as fathers, need to go down memory lane and recreate the scenario of the type of leadership quality and traditional institution they inherited from their selfless and contented forefathers.

Let our leaders shift their logic for a moment and picture their image in the minds of generations yet unborn.  As a youth witnessing the self destruction of a place we comfortably refer to as home, what can we do to change the tide of history? Don't ever nurture your thought pattern with corrupt ideas of waiting to have your own destructive share of the national cake. Think of yourself as a potential role model for future generations. Utilize your free time to enlighten people on the need to become a positive nation builder.

Finally, if we can establish a connection with our past heroes, I'm optimistic that we will become a generation like theirs or at most a better generation. My heart sobs when I come across names like Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Malam Aminu Kano, Yahya Gusau, Sir Ahmadu Bello, Nuhu Bamali, Isa Kaita, Hassan Katsina, Inuwa Wada, Malam Abubakar Imam, Aliyu Makama Nupe, Sir Kashim Ibrahim, Ahman Pategi, Yakubu Wanka, Ahmadu Ribadu, Sunday Awoniyi, Hajiya Gambo Sawaba,  and the list can only dry up the tears in my tear gland.

The question is; have the women of this generation become barren to give birth to the likes of these great and selfless men? I guess no, but the society hasn’t given their bright children who have better foresight the opportunity to make the needed change. 
Wake up! Wake up!! Wake up!!! Educate people and create jobs to alleviate poverty and the future will be brighter.

We need to address the issue of illiteracy and poverty in the North with the greatest of enthusiasm if any meaningful result is expected.

abuuaminah@yahoo.com and @amraabdul on twitter