I am certain we can easily reach a consensus on the numerous problems facing the country right now. However, arguments are bound to arise in discourse of ways towards tackling these problems. Regardless, I want to share my opinion and seek yours because my happiness, your development, Nigeria’s development and the consequent development of Africa might depend on this. I feel very lucky to be bestowed with this knowledge and the fact that I am acting on it right now. I really hope to sway you to my beliefs so I will try to be as coherent as I can. I have lived my whole life in fear and somehow, I have been able to harness that fear to fuel my aspirations. I entered into the university of Ilorin in 2013 after two unsuccessful attempts with much enthusiasm to learn as most of us do in our first year. Though I was not given the course I chose, I was happy with it anyways because I was quite the guru in government in my secondary school.
I was lucky enough to have an ambitious man for a father. He bought newspapers everyday throughout his lifetime and I made it a habit of reading these newspapers especially the Sunday punch special editions for children. He was quite the father figure. He would send me to submit documents for him at offices in Apapa from Ejigbo when I was as young as 13. I still remember the frown on my face when he woke me up to go drop a proposal at the headquarters of the former Bank PHB now Keystone bank. I subconsciously gained invaluable knowledge of the business world. After his death, I met Goke, the CEO of GQ234.com and through him, I got a job as an office assistant at a branding company before my university admission. He also taught me that I can learn anything as much as I want to. My initial exposure to the business atmosphere in Lagos waned my interest in theoretical political discourse and through pure chance, I heard a neighbour of mine discussing an idea of a social network with another friend. This was new and I loved learning new things so I spoke to this neighbour about his idea. That discussion changed my whole view about life. Long story short, we became partners that day and room-mates later that year. He taught me the act of thinking differently and we challenged each other subsequently. He would bring an idea for MTN and I would be forced to think about an idea for Etisalat. He would bring up something for GTbank and I will counter with a better one for Diamond bank. It was like a game. We innovated just for the fun of it. Ibrahim can wake up today and challenge himself to think of a new type of fashion style that has not been done. I in turn would brainstorm for a new type of shoe to fit it. He would think of an advertisement campaign for Pepsi, I would think, why not let us brand KUNU and ZOBO and make it global too?
For the past two years, my partner and I have constantly innovated while looking for an outlet to pitch our ideas to no avail. The ones who would hear can’t afford it. Some say, we should wait for the future. I am in my final year, that future is now!! I use to like DSTV commercials back in 2010, now I laugh at the advertisement campaigns I see or the scam that some corporations call promotions today. What happened to user-centric innovations for creating value and solving people’s problems? Together, we have developed viable software, branding, marketing and advertising ideas across different market sectors guaranteed to take any such company to the top. Even better, we have start up ideas to topple these same companies. So, it frustrates me when I look around and see potentials being plundered. My comparative analysis of the foreign policy of the United States, China, South Africa during the last semester and, the role of the state in the economy gave me a certain sense of direction. My ideas are exactly what Nigeria needs. I read a lot. Always seeking to know more and constantly looking for ways to develop myself then tailoring what I learn to solve problems in my environment. I write content and business plans on freelance sites yet I haven’t written a single line in my final year project. How can I knowing my research would be vain? Or if probably good enough, it might grace the shelf of your supervisor till another replaces it. I didn’t travel during the short break as I tried pitching little ideas to small businesses around the university area, informing them on the benefits of branding and digital marketing as an avenue for enticing customers. Let’s just say most of them want a miraculous turnaround absent investment. And this frustrates me. Most of my friends have either settled for less, crime [Yahoo Yahoo], or complacency. You should see the level of apprehension in the 400level political science group chat about the future. Even the almighty scholars are scared. Some of my mates hope to use their meagre National Youth service Corp allowances to start up something when Civil servants are being owed months of salaries. SMH* Na Corper come remain. Our uncles and aunts that graduated years ago, are still underemployed or unemployed. WAKE UP GUYS!! And get a skill. I recently concluded a historical and practical study on the creation of blue oceans – A distinctive market of loyal customers. At the age of 21, I am an entrepreneur, marketing expert, brand consultant, UX engineer and business developer. All this I learnt online in two years. You really can do more than you imagine.
For years, I have watched the success of D’banj as an inspirational story to myself. Most times I wished I was as brave in following my dreams. While listening to an old jam of his recently, it triggered a start-up idea called NOLONGTHING. A solution that will be much appreciated by every man in Nigeria. Conducting a research on the scalability of this solution further led to me to the discovery of an incredible multifaceted advertising campaign for BEAT BY DRE that must be implemented in June for peak effect. The idea is capable of tripling their sales and saving them millions of dollars which is currently being on the #BeHeard campaign. I get these ideas from mere observation God’s creations. And every moment I remain not chasing them, another person is edging closer to actualising my innovations. I was going to start small as generally advised but I can’t sell a multi-million-dollar idea meant for Yeezy to a local boutique or an idea developed for the KFC franchise to my local food restaurant. Even more painful is that Nigerian youths recognise the need to develop themselves and still don’t. For me, I stayed off social media and found my ingenuity in solitude. I rejected herd behaviour and remained distinct. I do hope you will strive for more and not settle for less or worse still settle for crime (YAHOO YAHOO). Life is all about consistent improvement and you only have one of it. Dream but don’t forget the execution. I vehemently implore you to look within yourself and strive to be better than you are.
I believe the Presidency evidently has great plans for Nigerians. The economic meltdown is a result of our continual tolerance of corruption and oppression. As for me I would rather be pragmatic like D’banj. I would also like to appreciate the efforts of the Vice President, Professor Osinbajo on his efforts towards improving the economy. I have been a huge fan since the day I downloaded the books you recommended for youths earlier this year. They have been nothing short of an eye opener to the deficiencies plaguing Nigeria and Africa in general. I would love to meet to propose ideas I have on promoting small market enterprises and fostering the shift to a cashless economy. Following your timeline in recent times, I know you are the one I have been waiting for.
Consequently, I appeal to you. Yes, you reading this. Don’t be complacent. Dream and work towards it. Stop being a mummy’s boy or daddy’s girl. It is your life. Don’t let it be dictated by others. Stop the follow-follow therapy. The Nigerian system needs reorientation and reorganization. Change begins with you & me. Seek knowledge and act. I would like to end this by imploring you to support my lofty ambitions. I need you to help me share this on any social media platform you have, tagging D’banj [@iamdbanj] on Instagram and twitter about my idea for him and the vice president, Professor Osinbanjo [@profOsinbajo] on twitter. At this age, I believe I have a lot to offer to the development of this country and you too can, by developing yourself. My name is Awojobi Adedayo Basit. I am a 400level student of the department of political science in University of Ilorin.
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