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Saturday, 30 March 2013

Banky W's Speech At The 5th Annual Bola Tinubu Colloquium In Lagos

I recently celebrated my birthday… I was fortunate enough to go to
Dubai to attend my friend Tuface Idibia's wedding… and I want to start
off my speech by showing you a couple of pictures of Dubai, because
what I saw there inspired me.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is the same oil that was discovered there in
the 1960's that they used to transform that society. The very same oil
that was discovered here. But what have our leaders done with it?
Benjamin Franklin once said "when you're finished changing, you're
finished". I'd like to take that a step further by saying "we must be
a part of the change we seek, or risk being changed ourselves".
The question is no longer "will Nigeria change"… but rather, it's
"will it change for the better or worse" and"who will lead that
change".
History is rife with instances of regimes, institutions and societies
seeming stable and unshakeable… but young people being fed up with the
status quo, became the catalysts of Change in their societies. In
recent times we've seen young people all over the world clothe
themselves with the "change" mantle and become a part of the movement.
We've seen that no matter the society, and no matter the circumstances
of oppression and corruption, change is possible if the people decide
that enough is enough. From Tunisia, to America, to Egypt… young
people are changing the world every day. Nigeria should be no
different.
They say "insanity" is doing the same thing over and over and
expecting a different result. We cannot continue the same behaviours,
year in, year out and expect better results. Except for prayer, you
can't do the same thing over and over again and expect things to be
better. And even with prayer, you actually have to get up and do
something after all they say heaven helps those who help themselves.
Things young people can do:
1) Be involved in the political process:
1.Register to vote
2.Actually Vote for the right candidates.
3.Or Sit back and let someone else steal your voice.
2) Peacefully protest
1.Media: Old & New
i. Twitter, Facebook etc – I believe that even though the
internet accessibility in Nigeria is still low, we cannot ignore the
importance of such platforms. They serve as tools that can help in the
movement. And thingsare changing everyday… many phones today have some
internet capability or the other.
1.Efforts like Occupy Nigeria, Light Up Nigeria, Enough is Enough, etc.
2.Newspapers, blogs, etc.
3) Become fully involved in the Political process.
1.It's easier to talk about and/or criticize people that are working
thanto do the work yourself. Join a party and try to help influence
policy. We can level the playing field if we all get involved in this
Movement for Change. And it's not just at the federallevel. Young
people need to start getting involved even from the local and state
levels in order to properly influence policy and society.
4) Use whatever voice or platform you have… constructively. I'm a
musician and so you've seen me singing and speaking publicly about the
need for the change in our country… but you can use whatever sphere of
influence you have… be it with family, friends, school, neighborhood,
church or mosque. Everyone has a voice and a role to play.
I'm here because I'm a dreamer. Everything I have now, that God
blessed me with… was born out of mydreams. I dreamt of becoming a
singer; dreamt of owning my own Record Label company, and other
businesses. Dreamt of being able to influence my surroundings, my
city, my state and my country through my work. But Some people stop at
dreaming while others actually wake up and set about trying to make
those dreams come true.
I dream of a changed Nigeria where each child, no matter the
background has a dream of his/her own, and is given access to
education, healthcare,and basic amenities in life to make those dreams
come true.
I dream of a changed Nigeria where the opportunities abound for anyone
willing to work for them; where every man, woman and child is given a
fair shot to avoid poverty and become a success at whatever they set
their minds to do.
I dream of the day in Nigeria where we finally live up to our
potential – ascitizens, leaders, countries, and as a Continent.
If our children and future generationswitness Nigeria in the same
conditions we have her today, then we would have failed them. That's
why I'd rather be here, speaking with like minds and putting my hands
to the plow, than sitting at home being an arm chair critic.
We're all here because we want to bea part of Changing Nigeria for the
better. That's why we are getting involved. Whether or not each
person's intentions are pure… only God would know… only Time will tell
and only History will judge.
We must all speak up. We must all work for it. We must all stand up
and be counted, if our dreams are to become reality.
I'm Banky W, and I stand for change. Do you?