Vice President Kashim Shettima has challenged graduates to embrace their potential and contribute to building a brighter future for Nigeria instead of jolting out of the country in search of greener pastures.
He gave the charge on Wednesday when the Chief of Staff to the President and former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, led the graduating class of the second cohort of the Legislative Mentorship Initiative on a visit to him at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
“I believe passionately that in this room, there are future presidents, vice presidents, senators, members of the House of Representatives, and governors. We also have future drivers and captains of industry,” Senator Shettima noted.
The VP struck a chord of empowerment when he urged the graduates to reject disillusionment and embrace their potential within Nigeria.
“Let no one make you feel inferior as a Nigerian. One out of every four black men is a Nigerian. Let no one deceive you into thinking that the grass is greener at the other end. Certainly, we can make it green on our home turf,” he noted.
He further challenged their perception of leadership, shifting the focus from physical strength to intellectual agility, even as he stated that “the hallmark of true leadership is not the ability to lift a bag of cement, but the ability to come up with robust solutions to a nation’s problems.
“Give us a couple of months, and this country will bounce back. Say no to the naysayers and to the prophets of doom. It doesn’t serve any purpose. Our ability to accept each other and our tolerance threshold will determine how far we can go as a nation. And the quality of governance is crucial to the goal and trajectory of our nation,” he added.
The Vice President, in a statement by his spokesman, Stanley Nkwocha, called on the LMI graduates to become active participants in shaping Nigeria’s destiny.
Responding, the founder of the LMI programme, Hon. Gbajabiamila, said the generation of young men and women in the cohort is a generation like no other.