By Lizzy Okoji
A Christian association under the auspices of the Christian Youth Leadership Network, says Kogi Gov. Yahaya Bello is the right choice to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023.
The group made this known in Abuja on Saturday during the opening of its two-day National Retreat with the theme: “Kingdom Dimension: Effective Leadership and Governance”.
Apostle Faith Eches, Convener of the retreat, said a youth of Bello’s calibre in the 21st century Nigeria could change the narratives of the country through effective leadership and governance.
Eches said the kind of President that could actualise the collective dreams of Nigerians and address their challenges was needed urgently for the country.
“Gov. Yahaya Bello, considering his leadership strides in Kogi State fits in perfectly for such role.”
He said the group’s choice was also in line with the thoughts of former President Ibrahim Babangida, who had said that the nation should be ruled by young minds within the healthy age that is less than 60 years.
“The 21st century has been encroached upon even by those who had said some 30 years or 40 years ago that the youth are the leaders of tomorrow, which never came to pass.
“But today marks the epoch in the history of our nation, Nigeria, where the youth should come to the fore and master the destiny of Nigeria.
“Our very own person in the 21st century, who boldly challenges the conventional tides and customary patterns of method and procedures of doing politics in Nigeria, is Gov. Yahaya Adoza Bello of Kogi.
“We the youth of this country, under the umbrella of Christian Youth Leadership Network, represented from acrosd the 36 states of the federation and the FCT are saying Yahaya Bello is the best.
“We gladly, confidently and most assuredly bestow upon Gov. Yahaya Bello our choice of endorsement as the next President of Nigeria come 2023, by the special grace of God.
“The only right choice of President that can actualise the collective dreams of Nigerians in the face of our crucial realities is a sincere Nigerian, a compassionate leader and a passionate goal-getter.
“That is what we need as a people.
“Gov. Yahaya Bello is a Nigerian, a willing citizen and a servant of the people, who would rather not be served, but rather serve the country,” Echez said.
Arch. Bishop Jonathan Maji, Chief Missioner and Director, Springs of Life Resource Centre, said the choice of Yahaya Bello was because he had exemplified leadership in Kogi.
According to Maji, Bello has successfully collapsed ethnicity, ‘godfatherism’, and nipped insecurity in the bud to a certain extent, a prototype of expression of the Nigeria we all dream of.
“He has been able to pull a string that if given the opportunity, being youthful, there is something he can drive home at this time.
“That is why the Christian youths have come out to endorse Gov. Yahaya Bello,” Maji said.
Mr Segun Olonade, Managing Director, Confluence Rice Mill, who also spoke, urged the youth not to sell their future in 2023, but make use of the current opportunity.
Olonade noted that the choice of Bello as “a youthful and capable president” is a fight for a guaranteed future for the generation beyond.
He noted that Bello’s ideas of a restructured Nigeria, entailed equal representation of all geo-political zones in his cabinet, a principle he had successfully applied in Kogi.
“In any gathering, if there is a headcount, the age bracket, 18 years to 50 years, will always take 95 per cent, which categorically reveals that the decision for Nigeria can only be made by the majority, not the minority.
“Every fight we decide to fight for this course, especially for youth leadership, is a favour to ourselves and for our children,” Olonade said.