National chairman-designate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Dr Iyorchia Ayu has charged Nigerian youths to rise up to the challenge of leadership rather than fold their arms and wait for power-shift.
Ayu, a former Senate president, said power is never gifted, adding that the future belongs to youths who prepare themselves and not those who engage in kidnapping, prostitution, ‘Yahoo-yahoo’ and banditry.
According to the media office of the chairman-designate, Ayu stated this at the weekend in Abuja when a delegation of Benue youths, under the auspices of Benue Transition Mentees (BTM), paid him a courtesy call at his Maitama residence.
He said, “We often hear that youths are the leaders of tomorrow, but that is not automatic. The future really belongs to youths who follow their passions, who prepare themselves and who go after what they want.
“There are youths who are doing drugs, who are into all sorts of vices like kidnapping, prostitution, what they call Yahoo-yahoo. Some make up the battalions in the banditry ravaging the country. The future does not belong to these.”
While urging enterprising youths not to fold their arms and wait for power-shift, he said, “Prepare yourselves, follow your passions and channel your energies into creative pursuits. Organise yourselves, mobilise your large constituency and go for what you want, including public office. There is no Father Christmas in politics.
“Sometimes young people forget that many of us started out on this route as young men too. I became a graduate at 23, got my PhD at 31, was a senior lecturer at 37 and was elected to the Senate at 39 where my colleagues made me Senate President at 40. I can say that for others too.
“And in many of these outings, we successfully competed against older, more experienced people. So, when youths say, ‘Give us a chance,’ I tell them: ‘Chance is not always a gift. Power is never gifted on a platter or in a parcel.’
He used the occasion to decry the get-rich-quick attitude among youth people, and counselled emergent leaders to, first, imbibe the culture of service to the Fatherland, and money may follow.
Earlier, the youth delegation said they were in Abuja to congratulate Ayu on his well-deserved emergence as the new PDP national chairman as well as pray for his success in his determined quest of returning PDP to power, come 2023.