The present height must be about 30,000 feet and I’m loving it… At least I’m off the stress of Lagos for two days: Long enough to get some work done on Junior Achievement’s new program focused on careers for young people, and short enough for me not to miss that Lagos order in chaos. I have read a lot since take-off but two things caught my fancy: a Financial Times article on how motivational speakers keep smiling to the banks (and to each other) while many of us don’t remember a word of what they say; and an article in Nigeria’s The Guardian describing how Nigerians in two cities in the US have since commenced Independence Day celebrations!
In five days (specifically on October 1, 2006), Nigeria will be 46 — well, would have been an independent country for that length of time. A lot of events will hold, speech-making will be the order of the day from Local Government to State to the Federal level… and I have even received an invitation from a Southern state in Nigeria inviting me for an indepence celebration on the 6th of October in Abuja (I can’t help but wonder why a state will be … oops, straying thougts). But one event stands out, and you can call me biased: it’s the event holding at the University of Ibadan, where myself and Deolu Akinyemi will be speaking. Tagged, “The Walk To Freedom,” and holding at the Trenchard Hall, the event starts at 9am and I am particularly drawn to the meeting for many reasons.
First, it holds at Nigeria’s premier University — the same place that has produced a whole generation of global giants (many of who stood tall when it was time to decide for independence) — and second, it is being put together by a new generation — young people who are tired of the status quo ante! While the theme describes the walk to freedom, I plan to speak about a topic very dear to my heart… I plan to announce, “time up!” For what? The participants will tell you from October 1 evening 🙂 When will we get tired of what is, and desire to move on? When will we stop blaming others for the rrors we could have avoided? When do we decide to take ownership of our lives, communities and nation? Well, time’s up for what can’t conform to our dream of a New Nigeria. Yes, we have moved from dependence to independence, I am of the humble opinion that we must move further — to interdependence.
Join us in Ibadan, n’ile Oluyole, as we announce, “time up,” and consolidate our walk to freedom…