Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has stressed the importance of enhanced moral standards among youths for sanity to reign in the society. The Vice-President stated this yesterday while delivering a keynote address at the 111th Founders’ Day Lecture of King’s College, Lagos.
According to a statement made available to newsmen yesterday by his spokesman, Laolu Akande, Osinbajo said teaching young people that there were huge rewards from creativity, innovation with a culture of integrity in business and personal life, coupled with hardwork and diligence, was the foundation of a good and prosperous society.
He said: “When people are nurtured in the notion that rent seeking or capture of wealth or benefit by access to power is the path to success, then the society will not prosper. A few will capture all the resources, everyone else will be poor or on their way there.”
Osinbajo stated that Nigerians were gifted with attributes of confidence, resilience and mental acuity by any standard exceptional, adding that this was best demonstrated in how “we excel even in other countries in sciences, medicine and even politics.”
According to him, whilst receiving an education, the mind of a young person must be lifted up beyond self, the education “must teach the primacy of community, of the good and the well-being of the collective over self,” Osinbajo said.
The Vice-President said that the educational design and content must take into account, the current moral and social circumstances, as well as the physical and mental constraints we face as a people.
“There must be, as a rule, a prevailing moral standard, corruption or deviance must be the exception, not the rule,” he said. He added that the national conversation on education will be futile unless it also addresses the “concerns faced at the lower levels of our society; the problems of out-ofschool children and the huge deficit in education of girls.”
He noted that there are challenges of government investment in education, arguing that public funding alone cannot be enough to deal with the sector.
The Vice-President pointed out that Nigerians must recognize that the nation’s main endowment as a country “is neither crude oil nor any other mineral resource, rather our people.” He also noted that the country’s economic aspirations and capacity to compete in the global economy depend on “how effectively we empower our people to fulfil their potential.”
In her own contribution, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ms. Amina Mohammed, the guest speaker who also joined the event virtually, commended the Federal Government’s response to COVID-19 through the Economic Sustainability Plan which allocated resources to boosting broadband for education and minimizing the disruption caused by the pandemic.
Other dignitaries at the event included the Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, who virtually delivered a goodwill message from President Muhammadu Buhari; the National Security Adviser, retired Major-General Babagana Monguno; Minister of State for Education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba; Lagos State Commissioner for Education, Mrs Folashade Adefisayo; and the former Emir of Kano, His Highness, Sanusi Lamido II, among others.