It was another tragic day for Nigeria as 5 youth Corpers on their way to resume camp duties lost their lives along the Abaji-Kwali expressway on Wednesday.
This is a yearly occurrence and it won't be the last. With Nigeria's current security challenges, especially in the North East and North West, many are clamouring for a total scrap of the scheme.
Since 1972 when the NYSC was established, the goal was to unite Nigerians after the civil war. Today, it does seem that the goal of forging unity now rests solely with the actions of state actors. NYSC hence seems to be a money-spinning scheme producing little results other than fear and pain to families that have their relatives in hotbed territories of crime and violence.
The emotional torture parents and families experience when their loved ones embark on the long and strenuous journeys across the country is unnecessary. Some have to go spiritual, looking up to heavens for protection against bandits, kidnappers and of course, bad roads. It is saddening that when people gain from government agencies, and see it as opportunity to syphone money, they resist any positive and reasonable change. Greed!
National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) needs a rebranding, especially for the present times. People should not have to face risks that are avoidable. Corp members can choose to serve in their respective states or regions and it should be voluntary.
The political will to turn this scheme into an effective talent hub and boot camp is lacking and it is understandable in the Nigeria of today. The scheme should be structured as an incubator platform for the next big ideas that can be funded by government and private investors. As it is, it has become a shadow of the past and intended function. It has lost its glory and it is failing the youths. Nigerian youths deserve better than this.©Standard Gazette, 2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s publisher is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Standard Gazette with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.