Letter to the digital generation (Part 2) – Chris Uwaje

Letter to the digital generation (Part 2) – Chris Uwaje



I come in peace. The digital future – here we come!


Meanwhile, encapsulated in that amazing word is the fury, the haze, the bubbles, joy, fears, euphoria, clarity, assurances, music, agony, missteps, frustration, greed, tears, resilience, and conquest mechanisms to unveil the aura of your dream. Now, having devoured the content of part one of this piece; my assumptions are that you have the urge to further explore and repackage the future; recognising the fact that you are the true custodian of the emerging evolutionary digital transformation adventure.


Now, let us engage the conversation by inviting you to construct and pitch the vision of your future. The best way to actualise the struggle it is through a coordinated fusion together with the rest of the world. Beating the child and forbidding him/her not to cry as we know, is ingeniously criminal! The greatest lesson on crime against humanity teaches us that the toughest job for criminals is how to hide a dead body!


Alas, the revelations have started pouring out from the finding of the judicial panel on the Lekki catastrophe. Indeed, the more the crime actors try to hide and cover up the oddity of the scene, the more revelations stir us in the face. The truth cannot be hidden forever. What character do we paint of a nation without the youth in harmony with their dreams and expression?


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Peaceful demonstration is a critical path to the future-of-Things.

When the youth call onto your fathers, saying that they are in pains and need help. But the response they

received are uncountable shots of the gun response. I know you are hurt and wounded beyond reasonable

expression – but you are not defeated. That is the popular verdict, beyond all reasonable doubt – with respect to the

barbaric act during the #EndSARS encounter. We remember and never to forget.

The future is a complex word. It is not just all about tech. There are many hidden parts of the puzzle that mould the whole. Often, it inspires and simultaneously confuse the beholder – many of whom are youth in thought and actions. But to be a youth is not a crime. Rather, it is a mandatory life condition that all humans must pass through – oiled with parental love! Welcome to part 2 of this conversation.



Letter to the digital generation (Part 2) - Chris Uwaje



As you journey forth, in the digital hemisphere, the first rule is: ‘don’t forget your amour – your intellectual Property (IP). Protect it at all costs. Painting a current picture of your space in a world full of deep-rooted challenges reveals the abandonment of the blueprint of our heroes-past for building and developing a merit-first nation. However, the misinterpretation has given birth to millions of children out of school.


The most critical concern of the youth is the National Human Capital equation and how to completely overhaul the present situation for the equalization of digital knowledge development processes. In this regard, one is amazed and continues to question why a country cannot resolve the simple arithmetic of a national population data of just 210 million people; while at the same time, and in the same world; China with about 1.3 billion inhabitants has been able to electronically capture similar data?


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Capturing and measuring the amount of human capital that children born today are expected to attain by the age of 18 represents the most critical national assignment for leadership and governance. Therein lies the equilibrium of trustworthiness and security values for happiness and progress. It is unacceptable to have 13.2 million children of school age – out of school.


Equally absurd and unacceptable is to admit that the nation harbours about 21.3 million unemployed youth and indeed 42.1 underemployed people in nation where many millions live below global poverty level. In your advocacy for change, the need arises to ask: how do you turn the above scenario around to befit your cherished dream? Certainly not by renaming your nation from Nigeria to Naija; a disturbing conjecture that grossly derails and may defeat the purpose of your dream? Let it be clearly stated: ‘I believe in Nigeria and not in Naija’.


Do not get me wrong, I come in peace. I fought hard to devour the rich history of Africa to find my roots. The current inadequate compromise is Nigeria. And the search continues. Forgive my ignorance if I state that one (including your respected self) may be mistaken by clinging to the all-knowing ideology that beclouds his/her dream in an entangled freedom cobweb!


Fault is perhaps, not yours. But to be frank, there are many future fights waiting you to engage and conquer. Apart from the digital wars that stir you in the face, around the corner is the war of the Space and Stars. I will agree with you for example, if your demand progresses by calling for the change of our national flag! A flag devoid of inspiration, boldness, and audacity to dream heavenly dreams. A flag that dulling weeps without tears.




Letter to the digital generation (Part 2) - Chris Uwaje


Indeed, how do you reconcile a national flag vision statement that encourages you to build a 21-story skyscraper with the foundation of a bungalow with closed eyes?



And perhaps there is need to polish up your dream convincingly to the understanding of all of us. A digital blueprint would be required for endorsement through plebiscite. 



This is because, both nomenclatures represent different kettle of fish. One is distinct, while the other is ambiguous. I am ready to die for the concept of a nation currently named Nigeria. But what precisely is Naija? And are you ready to die for the Naija constructed on the ambiguity of your complex dream?



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So, what is Naija to you? I have asked many restless youths the same question and still unable to distil a convincing answer! However, I confess that I was part of that unfilterable concept in my youth living abroad. I grew up to question that double-crossed identity when non-Nigerians ask me ‘where are you from’? It gives to reason that my answer would always be Nigeria and not Naija.




Letter to the digital generation (Part 2) - Chris Uwaje



For a very simple reason, I can convincingly describe and convey my understanding on the Nigerian identity; but got lost explaining to others what Naija is? Now, you would be right to query this leg of my conversation by asking: ‘what has that got to do with this letter to the digital generation’? My innocent response is ‘everything in character’.


Meanwhile, have you ever wondered why our people are no more smiling, as was in the past? Our forefathers had and lived a humorous life full of smiles and abundant love for the children and youth. Above all, their scene of ethical values, transparency and sharing speaks volumes of constructive leadership vision worthy of emulation.


I am sure you are aware that, many confused minds floating in the cloud of the orchestrated youth cacophony continue to ask: ‘what do the Youth WANT? Afterall, they have everything!




Letter to the digital generation (Part 2) - Chris Uwaje


Seriously? Everything? Perhaps ‘ asking for the restructure of everything’? A model of life, as usual, which remains consistently constructed on selfish and individualist agenda that deters collective creativity; innovation and sustainable development is globally blind and in the dark!  That is why our leaders refused to be interested in African migrants dying in the ferocious oceans of the world.


As the number increases in volumes, Nigerian youth constitute a significant sum; many of them missing in action and unaccounted for due to the unforgivable trauma ignited by faulty governance.


The scenario above is the mirror of the critical state of our youth in a world that eclipses their dream. Their crime translates to making the impossible possible. A bright new world to behold by innovating the future they desire. Today, the youth have suddenly become a label of ‘the troublemakers’ and root-cause of under-development!


However, historical antecedents reveal that indeed the youth were the forgotten champions who saved Africa and especially Nigeria from perpetual penury. They were the front-line fighters against colonialism. They were the young slaves captured, gaged and shipped abroad. And they were the warriors who fought the slave catcher and have continued the struggle today as BLACK LIVE MATTERS; including other monumental feats in technology, innovation, and digital transformation frontiers. And yet they are labeled as lazy and good for nothing?




ALSO READ: Digital transformation: From mindset to mindshift – Chris Uwaje 


An envious nation is built on clearsighted and sustainable character and ingenious audacity to demonstrate her essence; her competitive abilities, humilities, and pride beyond all reasonable doubt. But how is that feasible when fathers don’t listen and refuse to reason and dialogue with their children?  Relevant and complex question!



The Judicial Panel of inquiry on the #EndSARS Police Brutality has submitted their report – now awaiting a White Paper from the Lagos State Government. Indications are that many cats are already coming out of the hidden bag and thunderous truths have begun to emerge. Expectations are high that the history of the state of Nigerian youth is about to be written – from ashes to monument. 





Going forward, how would you manage and sustain the success story pressed out from the blood of the slain heroes of #EndSARS? You have built an envious movement at the world stage – almost out of nothingness. A living miracle indeed. Leveraging digital transformation, now it the time to explore a moon-shot vision and digitally galvanize the Nigerian nation to where no man has been.


Finally, please remember that character matters as you digitally march to the stars. I will not be around when you get there. But my prayers are with you as you continue the struggle to conquer the audacious exploration of the ignorance of man.

About The Author

Osigweh Lilian Oluchi is a graduate of the University of Lagos where she obtained a B.A (Hons) in English, Masters in Public and International affairs (MPIA). Currently works with 1stnews as a Database Manager / Writer. [email protected]

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