The Vice President made the remarks at the virtual valedictory service for graduating students of Edgewood College, Lagos.
According to Osinbajo, “No matter how you look at it, you are unique. The game changed in your generation, you are certainly a class of game-changers. The point with any opportunity is that it must be seized if you are to benefit from it, which is why you must never take your place in history for granted. There is always a divine reason for it.”
He added that “circumstances have moved you ahead. No one has been here before. None of your parents or mine can tell you how life would be in or after a global pandemic. We know some but not nearly all of the challenges and all of the opportunities that will come with it. And if you tell me that you would have to wait until you get into University and even graduate before you start to answer those questions then you are missing the opportunity that history is offering you.”
He further explained that when an opportunity to make history comes, it is often disguised as a challenge, a drawback or even a tragedy, adding that an opportunity often “hardly ever looks like the next great leap of mankind.”
The Vice President noted that young age is a profound advantage in a time of uncertainty such as now and that such times also offer opportunities.
“There is no qualifying age to be a problem solver, an entrepreneur, a great poet, an inventor, or an author,” he said. “Age doesn’t matter. You must from now begin to examine the solutions to the problems that we face and will face now and in the coming years.”
Read the Vice President’s full remarks below:
REMARKS BY HIS EXCELLENCY, PROF. YEMI OSINBAJO, SAN, VICE PRESIDENT, FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA AT THE VIRTUAL VALEDICTORY SERVICE FOR GRADUATING STUDENTS OF EDGEWOOD COLLEGE, LEKKI, LAGOS, ON SATURDAY JULY 25, 2020
First, let me commend the vision and dedication of the founder of Edgewood College, for conceiving of and delivering this unique centre of education which combines a strong commitment to developing God fearing and selfless leaders with a dedication to offering the best in the sixth form education blending both local and the UK curricula.
To the staff of the College, it is to your knowledge, and expertise and your experience that our most important national resources, these young people are committed year in, year out. And you must be doing many things right to have received the Outstanding Cambridge Learner Awards, top in 2017 and the awardee of the high achievement in Cambridge A level Law in 2018. Congratulations and very well done.
For parents and guardians of the members of the graduating class, we all join you in rejoicing today and in thanking God for this great gifts of success and accomplishments.
And to the graduating class of 2020, my very special and warm congratulations. I have a short message for you, it is tilted “The Class of Game Changers”.
Every generation is gifted by God with a unique set of circumstances that give them an opportunity to distinguish themselves, to make history, to do something never done before, to positively alter the trajectory of the story of mankind. That opportunity usually comes disguised as a challenge, a drawback, even a tragedy; it hardly ever looks like the next great leap of mankind that it really is.
The generation that should take advantage may sometimes even miss the opportunity, because as human beings our inclination is to look back rather than ahead. We seek comfort in the familiar things, the known course of events, we want progress but we still want things to be the way they were.
But worse, we miss the moment because the opportunities no longer knocks, it sounds more like a whisper, barely audible because there is so much noise all around us, which is why I have named your class, the class of 2020, the class of game-changers.
You are the first set of students of this college to graduate in the midst of a global pandemic. You are also the first in the history of this school and in many parts of the world to have a virtual graduation. One thing I can say is that you are certainly the first school in Nigeria to have a serving Vice President keynote your graduation and certainly the first to have that done virtually.
So, no matter how you look at it, you are unique. The game changed in your generation, you are certainly a class of game changers. The point with any opportunity is that it must be seized if you are to benefit from it, which is why you must never take your place in history for granted. There is always a divine reason for it.
So, what should you do as a game changer? I think one of the critical things to recognize is that you cannot stand on the queue anymore.
Historically, circumstances have moved you ahead. No one has been here before. None of your parents or mine can tell you, how life would be in or after a global pandemic. We know some but not nearly all of the challenges and all of the opportunities that will come with it. And if you tell me that you would have to wait until you get into University and even graduate before you start to answer those questions then you are missing the opportunity that history is offering you. Age, your very young age is a profound advantage in a time of uncertainty and opportunity. There is no qualifying age to be a problem solver, an entrepreneur, a great poet, an inventor, or an author. Age doesn’t matter.
You must from now begin to examine the solutions to the problems that we face and will face now and in the coming years. Meeting virtually such as we are doing now was made possible by the inventors of Zoom a virtual meeting application, many more such applications, even better ones are waiting to be developed. You don’t have to be a technology geek to be an innovator, you can identify the problem, write up the solution and someone else develops the app. Some of the greatest and most useful inventions were made by young men and women before they even left high school.
At 15, Bill Gates had gone into partnership with his friend Allen, to develop Traf-O-Data, a computer program that monitored traffic patterns in Seattle, Washington State in the US. George Westinghouse invented the Rotary Steam engine at 19, the television was first conceived by Philo Fansworth, he was 14.
Timilehin Daomi, before he was 16 living in Ikorodu, there in Lagos State, had made prototypes of a vacuum cleaner, a pumping machine, a digital microscope and last year or about two years ago, a prototype of hydraulic-powered collapsible 4th Mainland Bridge for Lagos State.
Aghogho Ajiyen, a young man in Oghara, in Delta State and Ayoola Olaolu in Ikorodu, have been making prototypes of airplanes, drones and flying cars. Emeka Nelson in Anambra State developed a water-powered generator.
Sooner or later, these innovators will define enterprise, our economy, digital technology, in our country and perhaps around the world.
But those gifted in the arts and humanities must also take advantage of these times. Pablo Picasso, the legendary artist, had painted the La premiere communion’ when he was 15.
Amanda Gorman is the first youth poet laureate in the US. She took the hopelessness of the pandemic and the black-lives-matter protest to write a poetic masterpiece titled ‘Fury and Faith’. She wrote these words that must now be etched in our hearts as we face these uncertain times, and I quote the words that she wrote in that poem: “…whether we prevail in these times is not determined by all the challenges present but by the change that is possible…”
Arinze Ifeakandu was shortlisted for The Caine Prize for his book ‘God’s Children Are Little Broken Things’. At 22, he is the Caine Prize’s second youngest ever person to be shortlisted. And the list of these young achievers goes on.
The sum and substance of what I am saying is that, you leave high school at a phenomenal moment in global history, nothing will ever be the same again. Believe it or not you have spent the last one or two years here at Edgewood College, being prepared for this moment and for this season.
You have all that it takes to create a new narrative in the arts, in entertainment, in science, in innovation, in medicine, in business or the digital economy. Yes, you are still headed for University but whoever told you that you can’t distinguish yourself even as an undergraduate?
One last word that I must leave with you is that, never be foolish enough to imagine that anything happens without the Almighty God, all good and perfect gifts come from Him. Some of the smartest people that you will come across in the best universities in the world, will tell you that there is no God. Remember the words of scripture, “the fool says in his heart that there is no God.”
Some will say but life itself is about luck, chance, they might even refer you to the scripture that says, in Ecclesiastes 9:11, “the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to men of understanding, nor favor to men of skill; But time and chance happen to them all.” But the question that you must always ask is, who controls time and chance? They are controlled by the Almighty God.
So, I pray for you, that you will excel in all you, do, that you will be a source of pride and joy to your families and this nation, and that God will help you always in Jesus name. All will be well with you in Jesus mighty name.
Congratulations again, and God Bless you.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media & Publicity
Office of the Vice President
25th July 2020
CGI Babandede Bows Out With Glorious Light, Global Acclaim
The 11th Comptroller-General of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS), Muhammad Babandede, MFR, was pulled out from Service Monday in grand style, razzmatazz and pageantry, after a transparent and diligent service to his country – Nigeria.
The occasion took place at the NIS Parade Ground, Sauka, Abuja, and was graced by the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, who was Special Guest of Honour; Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Muhammad Badaru Abubakar, MON, mni; Service Chiefs, Inspector-General of Police, IGP Alkali Usman Baba and other heads of sister security agencies. Also at the occasion were top traditional rulers, Captains of industry, community leaders, youth groups, women groups and members of the diplomatic corps.
Speaking during the ceremony, the Minister of Interior, Aregbesola, who represented President Muhammadu Buhari, paid glowing tributes to CGI Babandede for rebranding and repositioning the Nigeria Immigration Service as a top class migration management agency globally.
Continuing, Ogbeni Aregbesola, enjoined Babandede’s successor and NIS management to effectively harness and utilize the ultra-modern technological infrastructure established by Babandede for continued policing and surveillance of Nigeria’s borders, adding that the innovation is world-class and must be properly maintained at all times.
The Minister of Interior poured encomiums on the out-going CGI, applauded the gigantic transformational milestones and legacies left behind by the outgoing CGI
In the same vein, the Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Muhammad Abubakar Badaru lauded the sterling leadership qualities of CGI Babandede, patriotism and monumental achievements of the outgoing CGI, noting that he is a shining ambassador of Jigawa State, whose footprints are written on the sands of time in building a harmonious relationship with sister agencies; was unparalleled and must be exploited to the fullest for enhanced productivity and service delivery.
He enjoined other chief executive officers to borrow a leaf from the mercurial service record of CGI Babandede who has made Jigawa State proud.
Meanwhile, other stakeholders are also unanimous that CGI Babandede will continue to be a reference point, in the annals of efficient service delivery, transparency and patriotism in Nigeria, alluding that he has changed the narrative and paradigm shift of the NIS in compliance with best international practices.
Also, a prominent civil society group, Guild of Civil Societies and Media Executives for Equity, Justice & Transparency (GOCMEJ), was full of praises for CGI Babandede for redefining service delivery, accountability, transparency and patriotism in Nigeria’s public service. The organization, which is an amalgamation of over 350 CSOs, NGOs and media executives, recommended the outgoing CGI for higher national office, stating that his invaluable service record must not be sacrificed on the altar of officialdom. Emphasizing that CGI Babandede is brimming with resourcefulness, youthful energy and zeal for service to humanity and his fatherland.
NDDC: GPMI Hails Sen. Akpabio , Says Detractors Should Leave Him Alone
The Global Peace Movement International UK has described the Niger Delta Minister, Sen. Godswill Akpabio as a man who claimed fifteen story building without a steer case.
The group also said Senator Godswill Akpabio is a proven performer. Since he became the Minister of Niger Delta, he has been working diligently to develop the region. It is on record that massive work is going on in the region in different sectors.
In a press statement signed by the media officer, Augustine Aminu (KSM) on behalf the President General of Global Peace Movement International UK, Dr. Mike Uyi who currently lost his sister, Pastor Rose Uyi.
He said, prior to the minister’s assumption of office at the Niger Delta Affairs ministry, activities at the ministry were in dire need for reformation. Therefore, it took the frugality in his resource management and political determination to turn around the entire gamut of the Niger Delta community for the better within his short stay in office.
According to Uyi, the mandate of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs is to formulate and execute plans, programmes, and other initiatives as well as coordinate the intervention activities of agencies, communities, donors, and other relevant stakeholders involved in the development of the region. Akpabio has promised never to deviate from the mandate.
“NDDC was meant to address the development challenges in the Niger Delta region but the commission has only enriched a few people in the past leaving the mission and vision not actualized. Faceless contractors have pocketed funds for projects and were never executed”.
“Akpabio is tested and trusted. As commissioner, senator and governor, he performed excellently. Unarguably, Akpabio is among the ministers that would perform very well in this administration and should be allowed to concentrate on transforming NDDC. GPMI believes that he will do greater things if given a higher national assignments”.
Under the supervision of Senator Akpabio, a forensic audit was carried out to unravel corruption and bad corporate governance in the commission.
“The Minister as we know him has been a detribalised and generous individual. His personal aides and workers hail from different states in the Niger Delta region and the country. Besides, the minister is known for presenting opportunities to people based only on their competencies”.
“He has carried all stakeholders in the Niger Delta along and that is why the region has remained peaceful since his emergence as a minister”.
Less Than 3 Percent Of Kaduna Residents Have Health Insurance – KADCHMA
Less than 3 percent of people out of about 9 million are covered by medical insurance under the Kaduna State Contributory Health Management Agency (KADCHMA) it has been revealed.
The revelation was made during a stakeholders meeting organized by the Kaduna Maternal Accountability Mechanism (KADMAM) with Partnership to Engage and Learn (PERL-EC) and Lafiya Programme.
Speaking on the matter, the representative of KADCHMA and Director of Operations, Dr Juliana Bungon said that apart from the state government employees only about 2000 individuals from the informal sector are registered with the scheme.
She added that getting the informal sector to participate in the scheme had been difficult because they are not organized as the organized informal sector who are part and parcel of the trade unions.
She however added that the state government is making arrangement with farmers in the rural area to batter harvested food items with relevant agency so that they can be captured in the scheme.
” we are also going to vigorously involve cooperatives, desk officers in local governments as well as embark on massive sensitization with media to drive home the matter, ” she said.
Speaking earlier, Mal Mustapha Juma’are said that people must be part and parcel of the scheme so that the issue of out of pocket expenditure which hitherto had been a stumbling block to Nigerians resident in Kaduna state can be minimized.
Mal Juma’are who frowned at the paltry percentage of residents who have embraced the scheme called on participants to help in galvanizing the populace so that they can embrace it and make it their own.
Also speaking, the Co-Chair of Open Government Partnership (OGP) Hadiza Umar said that action in the area of sensitizing and enrolling the people of Kaduna state is necessary in order to curb or reduce the number of people dying daily from treatable diseases.
She said that Kaduna State will remain open in all its activities as she urged participants and stakeholders to share the information especially in the informal sector.
Mr Abel Adejor, on behalf of PERL-EC and Lafiya programme said that the aim of the meeting is for associations and organizations that are in the informal sector to be properly mobilized with adequate information for them to key into the scheme.
He further said that the civil societies and Non Governmental Organizations (NGO) will continue to give support to program for it to succeed in the state.
The meeting was made possible by the KADMAM in collaboration with KADCHMA and support from PERL-EC and Lafiya programme in partnership with UKAID.
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