Great nations of the past and present are built on legacies of their forefathers and the pride of the entire nation. I was spurred to write this piece based on history; and the experience of being born and raised in a beautiful country called Nigeria. Nigeria has always been, to me, a country full of promises. But as I grew older my joy and anticipation grew bleak and I wondered if that great future that I was looking forward to ever existed in the first place.
As a grown man I came to the understanding that we make life what we want it by our daily choices. These will become our legacies. Like George Washington, JF Kennedy and Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa who have lived and died leaving legacies behind and leaders like Nelson Mandela and Margaret Thatcher who are still an epitome of right choices and good leadership.
In the present day Nigeria the story seems to be different. We draw comparison between our collective experience and the stories of how our fathers had free education, meal tickets at universities, jobs and car loans readily available at the point of graduation. In these contemporary times those same men who had those privileges while growing up are now taking away those same privileges that they owe, if not their birth children, the children of the nation, due to their desire for money, power and respect. The leaders of tomorrow are left to scramble for the crumbs that fall off from their fathers' table - unemployment, low standard of living, bad leadership and lack of infrastructural maintenance, lack of access to quality education and health care.
This scenario has left the future of the next generation bleak with no legacy to leave behind.
The sins of our fathers leave us with grave consequences; collapsed institutions our forefathers had created.
How, then, can we be surprised that we've created a breed of youths thrown into violence, armed robbery, prostitution, fraud; a generation brought up under the notion that corruption is the only way to make it out of poverty.
Motivation and creativity have been replaced with "the easy way out".
The story of King David's sin against God with Bathsheba (2Sam. 12: 1-14) ought to teach our leaders some lessons. 'For every action there is a reaction' and for Nigeria to survive we need to start making the right choices and decisions in order to leave a lasting legacy for the next generation.
The youth don't want to worry about the consequences of their fathers' sins.