The Executive Director of Equip Africa, Mr. Opeyemi Oke has said there is need to champion the cause of transition between the old set of leaders to the new generation, stating that this necessitate the need to hold the second edition of the “Emerging Political and Economic Leaders’ Summit”.
The event which took place on Saturday, 10th July 2021 at the Lagos Theater, Badagry had in attendance political office holders, academicians, influencers, various dignitaries and the teeming young adults across the region.
Mr. Oke while delivering his welcome address at the summit on Saturday stated that the need for championing the cause is important, hence, a call for engagement and capacity building for the teeming young adults is called for.
In his words, “Power does not come on a platter of gold. Young people need to build capacity and develop themselves, to be empowered economically and intellectually for them to be able to build a country we can all be proud of. These people want to design a future they will not be part of, it’s our future, we need to get behind the drivers’ seat and take responsibility”.
The programme highlights featured various panels with discussions on varying trending topics for capacity building which are targeted towards growth and development for youths.
The first panel featured discussion on the topic, “Audacity to Run, From Aspiration to Candidacy”. This drew submissions from different discussants with deductions on the need to run for elections on party structure, establishment and building on the realities of what it takes to win election by young folks aside social media politicking.
According to the discussants, it is important to lay a good foundation and a legacy that one can build upon before aspiring for political office. it was stressed that paying one’s due price of sacrifice and life impacting programmes can pave way in time of aspiration and emergence as a candidate to represent the people. Hence, building trust is important.
It was gathered in the course of the event from another panel with the topic; “Positioning Emerging Leaders for Economic Independence”, that the need to develop and build qualitative leadership who can be trusted cannot be undermined. However, it was highlighted that freedom does not come on a platter of gold but it takes people who are vision driven with passion to break even.
Also, the need to position emerging leaders for economic independence and build social values that over time has been lacking in our generation was discussed. Discussants said there is need to be deliberate in capacity building so as to emerge as leaders who are goal driven.
Mr. Oke while acknowledging discussants and participants who attended the summit expressed disappointment at the absence of most of the political office holders who were billed to attend and share their experiences with the younger generation.
“It is sad that though some of the elected officers did not show up, the conversation was never about them, it was about emerging leaders and I’m glad those that found it important came. We are building a platform where people can learn and unlearn, network to build their community which is the commitment to build the nation. He added
The event witnessed the presentation of honorary awards to personalities who have contributed to the growth and development of the community, among which are the Oniworo of Iworo Kingdom, HRM, Oba Friday Kosoko, ably represented by Prince Olu Kosoko; the Director/CEO of the Nigeria French Language Village, Prof. Lateef Ayeleru; the Pioneer of RAK Development Foundation, Mr. Mobolaji Ogunlende, among others.