25 years of democracy: Has Nigeria changed for the better?

25 years of democracy: Has Nigeria changed for the better?

As we commemorate 25 years of democracy in Nigeria, it’s essential to pause and ponder: Has Nigeria truly changed for the better? Rabiu Hassan Lawal, the founder of the Inspire Youth Development Foundation, examines this question with a critical eye, acknowledging both our strides and the roadblocks hindering our progress.

Since 1999, Nigeria has seen the helm of five presidents, each tasked with steering the nation towards prosperity and unity. However, despite our democratic transition, progress hasn’t always been as swift or as inclusive as we envisioned.

When we assess Nigeria’s development against the five pivotal aspects of national progress – governance, economy, education, healthcare, and infrastructure – the pace of improvement leaves much to be desired. Challenges such as corruption, insecurity, unemployment, and inadequate infrastructure continue to impede our advancement.

To chart a course towards a better Nigeria, we must draw inspiration from the exemplary leadership of our past icons. Their visionary leadership, dedication to service, and commitment to national unity serve as guiding lights for our generation.

Crucially, the role of youth in Nigeria’s journey cannot be overstated. As the future custodians of our nation, young Nigerians hold the key to unlocking our full potential.

Nelson Mandela once remarked, “People had said to me that South Africa could become an alternative beacon of hope and inspiration for Africa and the black race, but I told them that it was always going to be Nigeria.” This sentiment underscores Nigeria’s inherent potential to lead Africa towards a brighter future.

As we look ahead, Nigeria, Egypt, and South Africa stand poised to provide the tripod for real change on the continent. However, realizing this vision necessitates the active involvement and empowerment of young Africans. Destiny may be delayed, but it can never be denied – it’s time for Nigeria’s youth to seize the mantle of leadership and shape the destiny of our great nation.

In conclusion, 25 years of democracy in Nigeria is a milestone worth celebrating, but it’s also a moment for sober reflection. By embracing the lessons of our past, harnessing the energy of our youth, and fostering inclusive governance, Nigeria can indeed fulfill its potential as a beacon of hope and inspiration for Africa and the world.

By Rabiu Hassan Lawal, Founder of the Inspire Youth Development Foundation.

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