Mobilise Against Old People, Soyinka Tells Youth

James Sowole in Akure

The Nobel Laureate, Professor Wole Soyinka, thursday asked the youths to mobilise themselves and have representatives in government and stop bothering old people like himself.

Soyinka gave the charge while speaking with journalists after he delivered a lecture to commemorate the Second Convocation of the Elizade University, Ilara Mokin, Ondo State.

He advised the youths against making mistakes of following those who have failed them before now.
“I am warning youths against making mistakes this time. Mobilise and get your representatives and stop bothering geniatrics like myself.

“All I can just tell you is this, don’t make the mistake of following those who failed you before; those who are pretending that they have nothing to do with the disaster that has overtaken Nigerian.

“They are very quick to smell failure, they are very quick to shout it; but then, they exonorate themselves, whereas they are the founding malfeasance of the Nigerian condition,” Soyinka said.

Delivering his lecture entitled: ‘Tending The Tree of Commencement’, the Nobel Prize winner said Nigeria must pay attention to the training of teachers.

“This country must pay attention to the training of teachers, teaching is difficult today, if the teachers are not well paid, they will be looking for something else to do.
“If you want education to be improved in Nigeria, there should be more funding, more money to provide conducive environment; more money for training of teachers.

“For instance, you cannot be in the army without having frequent training. Army do not joke with training. Every three or four years, they go for update of their training.

“There is need for more money to train teachers and for them to remain in the service.
“You cannot get good service without money; if we improve the environment and the quality of teaching, we will continue to move forward,” the professor said.
Soyinka lamented the scrapping of history in the schools in the country and the fact that many people have forgotten their historical background.

Giving a thought to one of the kidnapped Dapchi girls and who is still in captivity of the abductors, Leah Shuaib, the Nobel laureate said the girl was able to maintain her firmness like Nelson and Winnie Mandela who chose to remain in prison despite the offer by the government of South Africa.

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