The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) was created by General Yakubu Gowon, the military head of state at the time, to bridge ethnic and religious divisions in Nigeria and to foster the spirit of Nigerian nationalism.
But in recent times, we have seen how corps members have been disregarded and exposed to unnecessary risk.
Recall that thousands of people have been killed in Borno and some other northern states since the Boko Haram insurgency began in 2009. Due to the severity of the insecurity in the region, the Nigerian government declared a state of emergency in Borno, Yobe, and Adamawa in May 2013. Yet Corps members were still deployed to the state.
Secondly, some months ago, the Director-General of the NYSC, Brig. Gen Shuaibu Ibrahim said corps members are part of the national defense policy of Nigeria and can be mobilized for war if need be.
My question is that; was this the initial mandate for the one-year service for Corp members? Is this why NYSC was created? Why risk people's children and disregard them?
Thirdly, last month, we saw how a female military officer humiliated a female corps member. It was gathered that the female officer used a bowl to scoop dirty water from a bucket and poured the same on the corps member.
The soldier ordered the corps member to kneel and while at it, soaked her with the dirty water. This is a complete disregard and disrespect to the NYSC.
Fourthly, the Governor of Ekiti State, Kayode Fayemi has advised President Muhammadu Buhari to recruit members of the National Youth Service Corps into the Nigerian military to tackle the insecurity ravaging the country.
The governor urged Buhari to equally turn NYSC camps into security training grounds to recruit the “able” graduates to join the military.
For me, I don't think this is a wise move. If the security agencies are still struggling to defeat those troubling the country, how can corps members that barely know what it takes to be part of a security agency join to fight insecurity? The federal government should rather recruit more soldiers than risk innocent citizens that are serving the country in diverse ways.
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