Why having youths in governance is key to Nigeria’s economic boom — Victor Okoli, MOGA CEO

 Why having youths in governance is key to Nigeria’s economic boom — Victor Okoli, MOGA CEO

By Victor Akuma

While mediocrity has taken its turn on many youths in our contemporary society, the likes of Victor Ezesinachi Okoli have decided to grab the bull by the horn to strive for excellence no matter the odds.

Victor is a final year Law student of the University of Nigeria, Enugu campus and doubles as the South-East Director of Policies, Programs and Projects of Law Students Association of Nigeria (LAWSAN) and the CEO of MOGA (Making Orumba Great Again), a foundation founded for the growth and development of craftsmanship in Orumba South LGA of Anambra state.

In this special timeout with Victor, he explains how he won Prof. Yemi Osibanjo’s recognition at Aso Rock and his dream for a better society.

Tell us about yourself

I’m Victor Ezesinachi Okoli, a final year Law Student of The University of Nigeria (UNN) and a native of Ihite, Orumba South Local government area of Anambra State.

It is known you are LAWSAN South-East Zonal Director of Policies, what does this portend for you and what are some of your duties as regards this position?

I’m privileged to be the LAWSAN South-East Zonal Director of Policies, Programs and Projects.

Truth be told, it’s very tasking as I get to oversee every LAWSAN Policy, Program and Project across the 10 Faculties of Law in the South-East.

I travel a lot, visiting this campuses, honouring invites, hosting major LAWSAN events amongst others! It’s been my administrative resolve to add value and change the narrative and I can boldly say we have done that!

Can you recount some of your achievements as LAWSAN Director of Policies?

Our Landmark achievement was on the 29th of November 2019, when we hosted the LAWSAN Goes To School. It will interest you to know that this major outreach was organized by us 22 days into office.

A corporate social Responsibility by the South-East LAWSAN. We visited 36 secondary schools across the 5 South-Eastern states in a single day with over 500 volunteeers! We reached over 16,000 secondary school students with the message of Hope as we explained to them their rights and responsibilities as citizens of our dear nation!

The outreach made history as the largest single student outreach by any student government in Nigeria’s history and was lauded by the Vice-President of Nigeria, Prof. Yemi Osibanjo at Aso Rock!

Aside that, we have hosted Free Google Digital Skills training for Law students across the East. We have secured internship slots for Lawsanites, we have hosted different online seminars and are preparing to host the maiden Edition of the LAWSAN South-East Zonal Conference.

We have also ensured that all programs and initiatives of the National body is replicated in the East and that our zone isn’t left out in all Grants, Opportunities and Programs of the National body!

As a youth in politics, what do you make of the country’s politics?

Our nation’s Politics is very dynamic and highly unpredictable. It is such because of the various factors militating against the cohesion of our nation. These factors include – Religion, Ethnicity and Corruption. It’s sad to know that corruption has eaten deep into the political, social and economic spheres of our nation. It’s no news that most of our leaders are driven by Greed and the need to loot public funds.

Daily, news of corrupt practices and foul games graces our Newspapers, TVs and media outlets.

We have a long way to go as a nation, and the day we choose to get it right, the journey to development will begin.

How hostile do you think is Nigeria’s political environment to youth participation and why do you hold such view?

Ok… In Nigeria, Power has been rotating amongst a few from independence till date which is proof positive to the fact that there is little or no space for young persons in our political environment.

If you look closely, you will find out that even the so called “Youths” in politics are mostly toys in the hands of Political Godfathers who still dictate the pace!

Take a look at most States and the fact speak for itself. You can count how many young persons we have in Government! For example, while offering Government in Secondary School, we were taught the political history of our dear nation! Those days, I recall vividly that we studied about Gen. Buhari and Tunde Idiagbon who were our Head of State and Deputy in the 80’s! It’s over 30 years now and in 2015 Buhari became the President of Nigeria. What does that tell you?

It seems to me that Gerontocracy is being practiced in Nigeria and we know not (Lol).

Is there anyway youths can help liberate Nigeria’s economic downturn politically?

Various ways. Kindly take a look at all sectors headed by Youths and see the transformation in those sectors.  The Entertainment World in Nigeria is governed by youths, it’s crystal clear that we are doing perfectly well.

Look at Rwanda, they have one of the best economy in Africa and most of her ministers and cabinet members are youths!

Young people bring innovations, zeal and alacrity to anything they do and that’s what our nation needs now!

We need proactive policies, proactive implementation of those policies and responsible leaders!

When youths are given a chance in governance, innovations become the order of the day and when that happens, our economic boom becomes certain.

What is MOGA and what brought about its conception and subsequent establishment?

Over the years I have been privileged to serve in different leadership positions and it has shaped me in no little way!

However my most defining moment in leadership came when I founded MOGA which was on the 8th of December 2018. MOGA is a community based foundation which means Making Orumba Great Again. I’m from Orumba South in Anambra State.

While growing up, I wasn’t opportuned to visit my hometown often, and whenever we did visit we left few days after!

In 2015, I got admission into UNN and that made me visit Orumba a little more frequently than before, I then found out we had a problem and that most youths there needed a platform to showcase their potentials and grow that which is already in them!

So, I spoke to some friends and on the 8th of December 2018, MOGA was founded. Seven weeks after it was established, we hosted a reading competition for indigenes of Orumba in Anambra State and gave out #200,000 as cash prizes alongside a career summit with over 1200 youths in attendance, the impact was so remarkable that we made it to over five national dailies and mind you the foundation was just seven weeks old when this great feat was attained!

That experience made me understand that if you set out your heart to genuinely add VALUE and colour lives, there will be nothing that will be impossible for you to create and make happen!

At Present, we are partnering with Fidelity Bank PLC in a five-day community development event in Orumba!

Today, I’m a very optimistic and enthusiastic Leader because I have come to know that everything is possible!

That experience made me understand that if you set out your heart to genuinely add VALUE and colour lives, there will be nothing that will be impossible for you to create and make happen!

As a potential attorney, where do you see yourself in the next couple of years; as an employee or employer of labour?

I’m passionate about entrepreneurship. In my second year, I won the Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award on campus. In my second year, I registered a limited liability company with two partners and we have been working on the project for over two years now. Immediately after our Law school, we intend to fully launch our growing business outfit!

Currently, I’m undergoing apprenticeship (smiles) and learning the rudiments of growing a successful business in my field of interest so for now I’m an employee but in few years time we hope to be employers of labour and a leading company in Africa!

I’m a Legalpreneur and I’m glad I studied Law as it has given me access to opportunities and wider scope of knowledge!

We are hopeful and certain that the future isn’t just bright but we will be a key player in the Economic development of Africa!

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