The Nigerian Youth is easily a demographic majority considering an estimated population of 68 million Nigerian Youths.Put in context, this is twice the population of Ghana; more than the population of South Africa and bigger than the population of the United Kingdom. If the Nigerian Youth population were to be a nation, it would be the fourth largest country in Africa and 19th in the world. By sheer numerical strength, it would therefore be a major country.
However, despite the foregoing, the Nigerian Youth has since our nation’s return to democratic rule in 1999 been kept on the wings and fringes of leadership. By the position of this document, we refuse to see the Nigerian Youth as merely a representation of tomorrow’s leadership but a distinct social category of people who are educated, competent and prepared for the task of today’s leadership. A few examples of our national history buttress the fact that when given the opportunity, the Nigerian Youth possesses the capacity to lead and with distinction.
Shehu Shagari – Federal Legislator at 30, Minister at 35
M.T. Mbu – Minister at 25, High Commissioner to the United Kingdom at 26
Richard Akinjide – Minister of Education at 32
Maitama Sule – Oil Minister at 29
Yakubu Gowon – Head of State at 32
Audu Ogbe – Minister at 35
More than half of the Balewa cabinet were 40 years and under.