Insecurity eroding NYSC objective, says Olubadan

Olubadan of Ibadanland, Lekan Balogun, Alli Okunmade ll says the laudable objective of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) is being eroded by a seemingly intractable problem of insecurity pervading Nigeria.

The NYSC scheme was introduced in 1973 by the military administration of Yakubu Gowon with the sole aim of unifying Nigeria in the aftermath of the civil war that lasted three years (1967-1970). It entails the posting of graduates of tertiary institutions in Nigeria for a mandatory one-year national service in parts of the country other than their states/areas of origin and abode.

But speaking while playing host to the management team of the NYSC in Oyo led by the state coordinator, Grace Ogbuogebe at his Alarere residence, the Olubadan said: “Today, an average parent would not want his or her child to go far away from their home state in the name of national service because of the fear of the unknown which was unheard of in the years past. The gains of the NYSC scheme are too precious to be discarded on the altar of insecurity.

Recalling his experience on his return to the country from the United Kingdom in 1972 when he had offers to either work at the then University of Ife (UNIFE) now Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife, or Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria and chose Zaria because he wanted to know his country, the monarch said such decision was made then because everywhere was safe and secure for all and sundry.

Read also: NIPOST to roll-out digitised postcode to tackle Insecurity, internet fraud

He urged corps members serving in the state to make the best use of the opportunity and hospitality of their hosts to advance the cause of the oneness of the country, promising the NYSC management his support and cooperation towards sustaining the objective of the founding fathers of the scheme.

Ogbuogebe, the state coordinator, said the visit was to felicitate Oba Balogun on his ascension of the throne, informing that the entire management was on camp during the installation/coronation in March this year which made it impossible for her team to be part of the epoch-making event.

She reeled out the achievements of the scheme across the country as well as the various interventions being made in critical sectors of the national economy, including education and health.

“Today, there’s no school or general hospital/primary health centre in Oyo State that you would not find a corps member,” she said.

The coordinator applauded the government of the state for its cooperation just as she recalled the fatherly role played by the late Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso 1. She called on Oba Balogun to see the scheme as his baby too, saying, “we will be coming with our requests and we want your doors to remain open to us”.

Get real time updates directly on you device, subscribe now.