By CrossRiverWatch Admin
It is extremely sad to hear of the evil tales of cult activities and the product of these activities. It is even more heartbreaking to hear this happen in my wonderful home of Umor Otutu.
I have been a proud citizen, all my life, of the wonderful scenery and hospitality of the Ugep/Yakurr Community, and the fact that both dwellers and visitors not only enjoy their stay, but help sell Ugep as a place of settlement and visit, especially during the Leboku (New Yam) Festival.
We must remind us, that in every society – especially one that transits from rural to urban – there is a need to clearly outline the growth and developmental path/pattern of her people, and most especially the youths, in order to strategically streamline their energies, focused towards the specific ideals that will further enable and support the sustainable development of the society.
But first of all, who exactly are the role models of our youths? Who exactly are our mentors?
Studies from Management, Psychology and Sociology agree to the popularity of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in explaining human needs and behavior.
While well-mentored youths of every Generation show a clear ability to move towards the top of Maslow’s pyramid (SELF-ACTUALIZATION), some have been left behind yearning and struggling for SAFETY and BELONGING/LOVE.
While a focused youth is put through his/her paces in career goals and leadership aspirations, some are left behind in the hands of persons who would gladly utilize their youthful energies towards the very wrong things that tear a society apart…SECT!!!
A Nigerian musical prophet by name Tuface Idibia once said, “Na community make us all but na SECRET SOCIETY na it break us all”, but no matter how much we blame our youths, the elite MUST take a chunk of the blame for turning the blind eye and leaving no marks, patterns or paths for youths to follow.
Our youths have been used and abused, right from the moment their peers compelled and sweet-talked them into their unholy blood subscriptions with secret societies and fraternities.
Some defied sound parental advice and dived headlong into the ‘game’, while some were birthed and fathered by parents who basically had no reason to have children, not caring to know their kids well enough and leaving them vulnerable and at the mercy of peer groups and the bad and ugly of the society.
Several commentaries have been released on the possible causes of the recent cult-related activities and deaths in Ugep – bordering on the wrong youthful participation and inclination to evil politicians – while some have proffered solutions, bordering on the lack of leadership and mentorship focus for the youths.
Regardless of all the narratives, I think it is time the elite came up with a strategic path towards the leadership and mentorship direction of our youths and children.
Chief Okoi Obono-Obla has made a call to action. We have to support him in EVERY way possible.
The incumbent Miss Leboku, Obia ‘Sarafina’ Essien has proposed a youth-oriented Program highlighting the menace of cultism in our communities/society. We have to support her as well.
At this point, it is imperative that all well-meaning persons of the Ugep/Yakurr community come together to propose sustainable ways of grooming the Ugep/Yakurr Youth.
As a matter of fact, the conversation should extend beyond Ugep. It should be extended to Yakurr…to Abi and beyond…where communities are warring and decimating themselves as though we are a people without any knowledge of Conflict and Dispute Resolution.
This conversation should be extended as far as possible due to the inter-connectivity of the pre- and post-millennial youth.
We must remember that after the PHYSIOLOGICAL needs of man, the next is SAFETY, followed by BELONGING/LOVE, and then ESTEEM, and lastly SELF-ACTUALIZATION.
Our youths will ALWAYS have a tendency to cling to something or a group that assures or promises them of SAFETY and a sense of BELONGING/LOVE.
We have to build tangible and intangible Infrastructures and Systems and design Projects and Programs that will enable youths focus and channel the tremendous creativity, knowledge and energies in them, strictly for sustainable development and sincere nation building.
In due course, we shall engage the youths on conversations that will mutually guide our focus towards the ideals that can move a PEOPLE forward, with youth-centered programs and activities.
Today is not for the blame game. It is not political and neither is it religious. It is the YOUTH vs the YOUTH and something has to be done and done urgently.
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