Nigeria: Too Many Nigerian Youths And Children Are Left Behind Despite Progress-UNICEF

By AAYP

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United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Nigeria has lamented that despite gains in the situation facing Nigerian children and young people, many are left behind especially when it comes to education.

UNICEF Country representative in Nigeria, Peter Hawkins stated this Monday in Abuja during the maiden edition of Naija Youth Talk, organized by the organization to mark the 2019 International Literacy Day.

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Speaking on the themed, ‘Nigeria We Want,’ Hawkins who was represented by UNICEF Chief of Basic Education, Dr Euphrates Efosie said

Nigeria’s youth bulge is one of the largest in the world, saying that out of a popultion of 200 million, more than 64 million persons are in the 15 to 35-year age bracket normally categorized as young persons.

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According to her, “It is easy to see this as a challenge to national development and it can be, if not properly managed and harnessed. Young people today live in a world of unlimited potentials. However, despite gains in the situation facing Nigerian children and young people in recent years, much remains to be done. Too many Nigerian children and young people are being left behind, especially when it comes to education. Nigeria has the world’s highest number of out of school children. More than 10.5 million Nigerian children are not in school.”

She stressed that UNICEF and partners want to build on the momentum of young people as they commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child this year and keep youth voices at the centre of the debate.

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“Today’s conversation tagged, the Naija Youth Talk, focusing on the The Nigeria We Want’, will allow young people to reflect on and celebrate the progress made by the youth to create the Nigeria we all want, as well as to build momentum and support for further action. This event is part of UNICEF’s global Youth Talks where young people come together to discuss and proffer solutions to crucial issues facing them and their peers.

“Environment that favors empowerment, entrepreneurship, employment and employability for young persons is what we need today. The Nigeria we want is a clarion call by young Nigerians who want to see a different Nigeria going forward.

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“In the education sector, which is the focus of today’s brainstorming, our young people want an education system with good learning outcomes, where a child with nine years of basic education could read and write. And have excellent numeracy skills. Young people want an education that is functional, equipping them with skills to compete in the highly technical global market place,” she added.

The Special Adviser to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, called on Nigerian Youth to be patriotic and love their country against all odds.

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Adesina said if we have a kind of country that we all want, no one will go outside Nigeria to become Second or third class citizens elsewhere. “I would like to stress that for us to get that form of country we must love our country but the question is do we love this country? A large number of Nigerians are happy when things does not work. Youths must begin to love this country, Nigeria even when the country is un-loveable. We want to get to a point where we can say; Nigeria with all thy faults, I love you still.

On the issue of Xenophobia, he cautioned Nigerian youths to desist from circulating fake visuals of xenophobic attacks, saying that most of the videos in circulation happened some years back.

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Nigerian youths are key to securing the country, says Sanwo-Olu

By T.guardian.ng (By Gbenga Salau)

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu has said Nigeria will be highly insecure if she fails to secure the today and tomorrow of its youth.

Speaking yesterday at the third BRF-Gabest programme, with the theme, Generational gap: Youth inclusion and the leadership question in Nigeria, meant to celebrate the birthday of Babatunde Raji Fashola, Sanwo-Olu said it is why Nigeria needs to invest in education and create an enabling environment for the youth to thrive and advised the youth to fight for what they believe in. He noted that leadership is not by age but by knowledge, insight and responsibility. He added that with the election of youths as speakers in some states, though progress is being made, there is still a lot more to be done.

Sanwo-Olu, represented by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth and Social Development, Dr Balogun, praised Fashola for being a visionary and versatile leader.

On his part, Fashola said young Nigerians must continue to have a positive mindset about the country. He also said there is a need to pay attention to organised crime as a critical element of insecurity the country is facing.

During one of the panel discussions, Banky W, who contested during the last general election, said young people need to loose the sense of entitlement they own, as no one owes them anything.

Drug Abuse And Nigerian Youths -By Jerome- Mario Utomi

By Opinion Nigeria

I remember with nostalgia how participants at a focused group discussion held recently in Lagos, bemoaned infestation of our nation by social problems perpetrated consciously and unconsciously by her own people. Warning that under this condition, it may be thought audacious to talk of creating a better society while we are still battling with the problems of battered economy arising from corruption, social vices and decay of institutions.

Among these social challenges, it was clearly stated that the consumption of drugs in amounts and methods not authorized by medical professionals has become but a silent reality that Nigerians should worry about. Noting that though the act cuts across all strata, powerful statistics make it abundantly clear that the youths-majorly males with a sprinkle of females remain undefeated in this act. The gathering had as a theme; The Alarming Increase in Drug Abuse: What Did We Do Wrong? , organized by the Justice and Peace Development Centre (JDPC), Ketu, Lagos.

Indeed, the worries by the participants without fail has become a living reality validated by a reported sex romp by four students (three boys and a girl) at the sunshine Lodge, Ihiagwa, one of the satellite communities close to the Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO), Imo state that left three out of the four students dead while the boys were taking turns to have sex with the girl after allegedly taking a mixture of tramadol, codeine and vodka.

Certainly, a striking human tragedy deepened by the awareness that it was avoidable particularly when one remembers that this incident occurred neither by accident nor as the first half of a reoccurring circle but rather the beginning of something new.

To explain; for decades, we have been warned with mountains of evidence that this was coming, yet, our leaders who are never ready to serve or save the citizens ignored the warnings describing it as a prank.

Now we have learnt a very useful lesson that we can no longer ignore.

The tragedy in a private hostel has additionally brought to the core governments wicKed underfunding challenge of, and incompetence in providing basic facilities such as hostel accommodation to the educational sector- a malady that runs deep through successive administrations.

If adequate hostel accommodation were provided within the school premises by the government, chances are that monitoring of these youths would have been enhanced.

But more important than all of these lessons is the urgent need to remap strategies to curb reassurance because if the results of the FUTO sex scandal looKs ugly and frightening, what is to come from what medical experts are saying may be worse if serious positive actions are not taken.

Going by these reports, there are but three main forms of drug abuse. They include the use of; mood-altering or psycho-active drugs, performance-enhancing drug and dependency drugs.

While mood-altering or psychoactive drugs such as Codeine, tramadol affect people’s reasoning ability and give the abuser wrong sense of wellbeing, performance-enhancing drugs such as cocaine, heroin drug give extra stamina or energy to the abuser. Dependency drugs on its part typify drugs people abuse in the course of trying to overcome some health issue or challenges or taken to maintain a particular lifestyle.

So what does this mean to our nation where every day ‘exciting progress” is made in the consumption of these substances without recourse to prescription. This stunning awareness in my views has made getting to the cause of this social challenge more compelling.

Certainly, it will by no means be an exaggeration to state that apart from negative peer influence, unemployment and a continuous avenue to escape problems and worries are the major reason why Nigeran youths take to the drug.

This, however, may not be the only explanation fueling this social evil.

Specifically, the deliberate desire by these youths to hide their weaknesses, failure on the part of the family to train the youths on the way they should go, broken home influence, and pressure to succeed at all cost also promote this social menace.

Regrettably, a common fact that abusers fail to remember is that aside from the wide belief that throughout history more people have silently been destroyed by substance abuse than any other cause, drug abuse according to psychologists, has never helped any individual involved.

As an illustration, it is factually supported that drug consumption in amounts or methods not authorized by medical professionals have in the past led to mental disorder, disrupted the abuser’s education and future, poor attitude to work, health problems such as lung disease, heart disease and deaths among others.

From this standpoint, it is a clear socioeconomic problem that we collectively as a nation will have to determine how to solve- as the future strength of our nation depends on these young people.

Catalyzing this process will among other solutions require the government and its agencies to come up with effective reforms and teamwork that will tackle the challenge from its roots.

I hold an opinion that what the government is doing in this direction is but a palliative which only relieves temporal distress, but leaves the disease and its ravages unaffected.

To succeed in this job, an effort expected from the government must have skill development and job creation for the youths at its centre. This approach to the problem is not without successful precedents. Addressing the perennial education sector funding and the infrastructural challenge will also be a right step taken in the right direction by the government.

Re-orientation on our cultural values by faith-based organizations and the civil society groups will assist the youths to drop illicit consumption of drugs and unwholesome behaviours that endanger their lives and threatens the society.

Parents and guardians must strive to influence which people capture their children imaginations and always be aware of who their friends are and what places they frequent. And always put the youths in the presence of people of great accomplishment whom they want them to emulate.

These in the words of Ben Carson are things that used to be done quite routinely by caring guardians but now many young people derive their identity from their peer groups and their social network which can be extensive.

Youths on their part must recognize that ‘the future is full of promises as it is fraught with uncertainty. And should, therefore, develop the capacity to seek activities laced with highest values

Source Opinion Nigeria

Nigeria: United will bounce back, says Maikaba

Plateau United Manager Abdul Maikaba has assured fans of the Nigeria Professional Football league side that the team will return to winning ways in the coming fixtures.

Maikaba stated this in a chat with http://www.brila.net that it is not too late for his side to come back to a Champions League spot on the NPFL table.

“If you look at it mathematically, we are just ten points adrift the top of the league, if we can have a good run of 6 to 8 matches unbeaten we can overcome this psychological trauma that the team is passing right now. Maikaba said.

Source Brilla

Nigeria: Willy Udube happy with Go Round NPFL season

By Kolade Oni

The Omoku-based side handler has explained some of the challenges his team is facing in their second season in the top-flight

Go Round head coach, Willy Udube has expressed his delight at the club’s form in the 2019 Nigeria Professional Football League despite the challenges that come with playing against other top-flight teams.

Despite only missing out on a place in the relegation zone last season by the whiskers, the Omoku-based side have been turning heads in their second season in the elite division and Udube is thrilled that his inexperienced side is coping in the elite division.

He noted that it has not been easy for him and the rest of the technical crew to ensure that the club remains very competitive amidst experienced clubs in the top-flight who have the financial power to spend big in the transfer market.

“The games are tough, but this is the case because we have a young and inexperienced team,” Udube told the club media.

“I have said it before and I will continue to say it that I have a very average team. Go Round FC is a modest club that does not have the financial power to bring in experienced players to the team.

“All this time, we have been trying to see how we can blend the players we have. It is not easy for us. It is a very big job for us, but I strongly believe that with the little we are putting in, this team will pick up before the middle of the FA Cup.”

Go Round are presently in the sixth spot in the NPFL Group B with 21 points from 14 matches and they will up against FC IfeanyiUbah this weekend in another top-flight action in Nnewi.

Source Goal

Nigeria: Lobi Keep Up With MFM With Sunshine Stars in NPFL

By Ridwan Yusuf

Sikiru Alimi‘s 42nd-minute goal is all Lobi Stars require to collect maximum points and rise from No 8 to fourth in Group A of the Nigeria Professional League (NPFL) 2019. For Sunshine Stars, they drop one place to No 10, allowing Bendel Insurance to gain one spot after the MatchDay 14 tie.

Concise News reports that with two matches outstanding (both away – to Sunshine Stars and Rangers), Lobi Stars are now only three points behind leaders MFM.

At the Aper Aku Stadium in Makurdi on Monday, the two-time Nigeria champions took the game to their visitors from the blast of the whistle with Alimi Sikiru and Samad Kadiri combining well and posing a constant threat to the away side’s defence. However, Sunshine’s Ayo Ojo prevented his team from going down to an early goal pulling some impressive saves.

The defence line of the Akure-based club would be breached in the 42nd minute when tormentor-in-chief, Alimi scored from an assist by Samad.At the start of the second half, Sunshine Stars improved their game, creating some chances, but Lobi shot-stopper, John Lawrence was at his best to help his team clinch all three points.

Following the victory, Lobi Stars have moved to the fourth position with 20 points from 12 games on the Group A log, while Sunshine Stars dropped further into the relegation zone, occupying 10th position with 16 points from 13 games.

Source Concise