Joblessness fuelling insecurity, youth leader warns FG, others
By Joseph Kingston, Calabar
Insecurity ravaging Nigeria is fueled by joblessness and frustration, Chairman of a foremost youth group in Cross River state, Nka Ikemesit Mkparawa Essien Efik Duopeba, Mr Ekpo Ekeng, has said.
In a chat with our reporter in Calabar, Thursday, Ekeng called on governments at all levels and the political class, particularly those from Cross River, to ensure job creation and empowerment become a top priority if Nigeria should come out of the security logjam unscathed.
“An idle mind is the devil’s workshop. Idleness creates opportunity for youths to join evil and destructive gangs. If our political leaders would priotise empowerment of our most active population, the youths, accommodate and create jobs for them, I tell you, a greater percentage of whàt we see destroying our country will reduce drastically.
“From my investigations, frustration and anger seems to be responsible for spates of attacks the youths are unleashing on the country. Our leaders should also know that the stick approach, employing violence to stop violence, will not achieve anything. Guns do not stop such issues, it is the peaceful talks that could play the magic,” he said.
While lauding the Cross River government for establishing and for the success story of Operation Akpakwu security unit, he said things could turn around for the better if the elites would have the love to draw the rampaging youths closer, sit them down and talk to them as fathers and elder brothers.
Ekeng also appealed to leaders at the local government level to do in their locality whatever the federal and state government were doing to give youths a sense of belonging.
“The federal and state government are trying to initiate empowerment schemes for youths to benefit from, leaders at the local government should do same because the local government is nearer to the people,” he stated.
The group leader further tasked leaders of Efik extraction in particular to save the ‘Paradise City,’ from security challenges, adding that village heads, parents and indeed everyone should put hands on deck to bring the nightmarish security threats to an end.
“Calabar is our heritage, our Paradise city, and we don’t have anywhere to run to. Build companies in Efik land and lift our youths from poverty and frustration,” Ekeng advocated.