Rodney Asikhia

It is people that cause change and its people that bring about development, a number of things come into play for this to happen. Amongst these factors, information and leadership stand out as critical components.

Our peculiar problems cannot be solved by imported solutions neither can our potentials be better exploited by foreigners nor can we be organized for any course by persons other than a Nigerian conversant with the culture and the experience of life in Nigeria. The realization of our full potentials in government, economic progress, social and infrastructural development is contingent upon getting the right political and social leadership, and youths play a crucial role in this respect.

Leadership and information form the core of social, political and economic change Demographic data in Nigeria shows that the youth population is higher than 70%; this makes youth leadership development of utmost importance. Every person is a potential leader and with the right information can lead change in any area. Art for Change will provide a platform where people with the potential of leading change in society meet and collaborate on issues of common interest. This will not only increase the chances of success for each campaign but will serve the bigger purpose of deepening our democracy and producing a generation of youths who not only see themselves as part of the solution to the Nations myriad of problems but will take a front seat in driving change agenda in the country.

 The contention among youths is that they haven’t been given the opportunity and space to lead or play any role in leadership in the country. This will amongst other issues address the concern of youths as they will be empowered by this platform to lead change on important issues by leveraging on their numbers, passion and energy.

In times past, youths have shown leadership and stepped up to the plate to lead change in specific areas, but they seemed like lone wolves in the wild and ended up losing hope. On the other hand there are some who desire change on an issue but are too aware of the obstacles ahead, this category of persons feel overwhelmed by the enormity of the challenges. The situation is worsened by the apathy amongst a lot of Nigerian youths, a lot could care less because of the many years of decay, they ask is there any hope things will get better?

There has been several change programmes set by successive governments in Nigeria since independence and all failed to deliver on their promises, all this foisted the climate of apathy and disenchantment that has deferred the attainment of our collective dreams.

Though the mood of a good number of Nigerians remains aloof, there are lots of Nigerians who are ready and willing to participate in the governance process. There is also an abundance of youths who have great ideas of an economic and social nature which will be beneficial to the public, that need a network where they can cross-pollinate ideas and network with people who can contribute in some ways to make the dreams a reality. 

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