A former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, on Tuesday urged Nigerian youths to play active roles in the 2019 general elections.
Moghalu spoke in Ibadan at the Kingsley Moghalu Youth Initiative Summit which focused on the relationship between good governance and youth participation.
According to him, innovation and a robust world view are the elements the youths need to bring about transformation in Nigeria.
He said: “Nigeria has about 60 million young population between the ages of 18-35 years; a potent force for development and transformation if harnessed.’’
Moghalu said Nigerian youths could make their mark in the 2019 elections by getting their permanent voter’s card and ensuring that they vote for their candidates at the polls.
He challenged the youths to demonstrate a sense of strategic global vision, saying this would bring about change in the country.
He said: “We must bring about generational change in Nigeria. Youths must understand the responsibility in their hands.
“You have the chance to change the trajectory of this country, you can take the country in the direction of real progress or continue to recycle failed politicians.
“Let us look for the real kind of candidates that can help make real progress in the country.’’
Moghalu also advocated for a N500 billion venture capital fund to replace the N500 billion social intervention fund the Federal Government was currently deploying for some initiatives.
He said: “It is money down the drain, an empire of waste and corruption which Nigerians are not really benefiting from.
“All over the world, it is the private sector, especially the small and medium scales enterprises that create jobs; that are how our economy can prosper.”
He also said Nigeria must shift away from an oil economy, arguing that the real wealth and prosperity for the country would come “when we find men and women who invent things’’.
Moghalu further urged the government to stop paying lip service to science and technology while improving its budgetary allocation on capital expenditure.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the summit featured discussion segments between entrepreneurs and youths from selected tertiary institutions in Ibadan.