Buhari applauds NYSC at 50, Gowon for his foresight
President Muhammadu Buhari has praised retired Gen. Yakubu Gowon, a former head of state, for his wise decision to establish the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in 1973.
In a statement released on Friday in Abuja by his spokesman, Mr. Femi Adesina, Buhari claimed that the program had successfully advanced the objective of national integration.
According to the president, this is done by fostering opportunities for cross-cultural interactions and building strong bridges for better understanding.
Buhari congratulated the former Head of State as well as all previous and current Directors-General of the Corps for starting and upholding a legacy that spanned 50 years and had strengthened a web of camaraderie and bolstered patriotism.
He claimed that the program had also broadened citizens’ horizons, encouraged civic responsiveness, improved understanding of various individual and ethnic identities, their diversity, and emphasized the fundamental importance of the shared values of justice, fairness, peace, and unity.
He asserts that the NYSC is still one of the best models for fostering nationalism, institutionally promoting inter-cultural and interreligious unions, and reducing enclave among citizens.
He claimed that the program had also aided in the relocation of members of various tribes to various regions of the nation, the exploration of business and entrepreneurship opportunities, and the fostering of a new culture of unity, brotherliness, and neighborliness.
According to Buhari, the program must be maintained and its history, structure, and goal must always be emphasized; for any reason, they must not be misused, dismissed, or undermined.
This, according to him, could be accomplished by keeping an eye on the bigger picture and remembering that “Nigeria’s unity is a process and a collective responsibility that must not be negotiated.”
The president claims that he shares the happy season of the milestone with everyone who has enjoyed the adventures of the plan and has been nostalgically exchanging memories and pictures.
The president sent his best wishes to prospective corps members as they relocated to various regions of Nigeria in order to share and discover the country’s rich diversity.
Buhari reflected on the tradition of welcoming corps members to his country home in Daura, Katsina State, during Eid-el-Fitr Sallah and inquiring about their welfare as one of the joys and highlights of his administration.
He mentioned that two presidents on a state visit—from Guinea Bissau and the Niger Republic—had engaged in and appreciated such interactions.
The president expressed his gratitude to the Nigerian Army, the NYSC Directors-General, and a number of other private and public institutions for creating the conducive environment for the program’s success.