President Muhammadu Buhari has said the someday, the Nigerian youth will lead the country whether the older generation of leaders like it or not.
The president said this when the youth leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from the six geo-political zones, visited him on Friday.
Femi Adesina, presidential spokesman, quoted the president as asking the youth to prepare for when the baton of leadership will be handed over to them.
He also advised the younger generation to keep a broader view of the country as one entity, and “continuously de-emphasize ethnic and religious backgrounds in nation-building”
“With all certainty, someday you will have to take up the mantle of leadership in this country, and you should be prepared for huge responsibilities,” Buhari said.
“Whether we like it or not, we will someday handover to Nigerian youths. And you have to brace up for leadership. Some interest groups will come up with ethnic, religious issues, but you have to look at the broader picture.
“We had a civil war that consumed over 2 million Nigerians, and we learnt our lessons. Nigeria is one country, and no one should take our firmness for granted.”
The president said he took interest in politics after “a clean bill on his integrity” by those who detained him after the 1985 military coup and who “thoroughly checked his record” as governor of the northeast, and as minister of petroleum and head of state and “found nothing incriminating”.
“After I was released and nothing was found on me I took interest in politics. This is what pushed me into partisan politics; to serve with integrity. So I decided to try leadership as a civilian, after taking off the military uniform,’’ he said.
“I am currently serving my last term in office. I swore by the constitution to defend the country, and I will do the needful for the country.”