By Adejumoke Alebiosu
Nigeria is truly a great country on the African Continent. We are blessed in multiple dimensions. The natural gold treasures, buried beneath our alluvia soils; fertile farmlands and resourseful forests have made us an enviable nation in the face of others on the continent.
And to ice the cake, God Almighty has bestowed Nigeria with the best brains in virtually every profession. Our human resources compete and rank top anywhere in the world.
We are damn blessed! Our only nightmare is how to locate the few gifted brains in our midst. They are really very few in the flock. But once in a while, the Almighty God allows the dais to fall on some of them.
In today’s Nigeria, under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari, I have sighted another golden fish of leadership. He is Major General Shuaibu Ibrahim. I wouldn’t say, he is just a military officer; but a soldier of the finest breed. Gen. Ibrahim is aroundly gifted.
Gen. Ibrahim breaks the hardest of rocks to make impacts, anywhere national duty beckons on him. He is an avid reader of the ilk of Military historians; a consummate administrator and voracious reformist.
In both academics and soldering, I know Gen. Ibrahim as someone who has measured beyond expectations and very rapidly.
And very profoundly, the Nasarawa state- born Army General is loyal and patriotic to his country. He is a passionate lover of anything progressive and Nigerian youths are his first destination.
So, destiny flung him to lead the NYSC. Since 2019, when Gen. Ibrahim was appointed DG- NYSC, the scheme has broken new grounds in redefining itself. After decades of its establishment, the NYSC has finally landed itself on the palms of someone who knows the intricacies of its rejuvenation. And I dare say, that persona is Gen. Ibrahim.
Amazingly, the NYSC we have known through the years, which depends on the FGN for payment of all its basic bills is now paying revenues generated from its investment ventures into Government treasury. And who has made it possible? It is General Shuaibu Ibrahim.
It may surprise many Nigerians, but Shuaibu Ibrahim has paid over N1billion into FGN’s TSA Account between 2020 and 2021. It’s the first in the nearly five decades of the history of NYSC. I re-echo, Ibrahim is my hero in leadership.
And why? Ibrahim used the intellectual assets of these young Nigerian graduates to establish and reactivate moribund investment ventures of the scheme. Some other leaders would have embezzled the money and still beggingly ask President Buhari to fund the NYSC.
Under Gen. Ibrahim, the NYSC has deployed her intellectual assets to think outside the box! I was so shocked to know he has changed the negative narratives of the scheme in just two years. Ibrahim is a soldier whose mind pulsates with innovative ideas. NYSC is not the first bus stop for Gen. Ibrahim! He was the pioneer Registrar, Nigeria Army University Biu (NAUB) in Borno state where laid the template for the now booming institution.
Why is the NYSC generating revenue for the FGN now? Its Gen. Ibrahim! Doubting Thomases can personally seek to find out from him or his management team. But through my personal investigations, the man saw a brilliant, but repressed future of Nigerian youths and removed the veil.
The NYSC is now flaunting a pantheon of rewarding investments and generating revenues. Is it the Niger or Anambra States NYSC Garment Factories; the NYSC Rice Mill in Ezillo or NYSC Bakery and Water Factory in Abuja’s Kubwa? Or should I talk about the Lagos State NYSC Feed Mill at Iyana lpaja, which is a beehive of commercial activities or NYSC’s romance with Nigeria’s best brains through its Entertainment Company Limited, which encompasses the productive NYSC National Band; NYSC National Troupe and the NYSC Movie? Those in doubt, can still ask additional questions and probe further with Corporate Affairs Commission ( CAC) on NYSC Corporate Investments.
Have Nigerians not noticed the blossoming NYSC Farms in Kwali, FCT, Saminaka, Kebbi Bauchi States? The scheme has keyed into President Buhari’s masterplan on food security through agricultural revolution and executing it in a manner most State Governors have failed to do in their states.
All these innovations have become possible because Gen. Ibrahim who knows how to harness productive talents is on the driver’s seat . I want to believe, Gen. Ibrahim is one among President Buhari’s proudest of appointees.
The NYSC under Gen. Ibrahim has established a museum to preserve the scheme’s history. Also, the process of establishing the NYSC’s Radio and Television has reached advanced stage. The Printing Press in Kaduna was commissioned on 21st January, 2022. This is the redefined face of NYSC as reconditioned by Gen. Ibrahim for you!
Elsewhere, in the Northwest and Southwest Regions, the DG-NYSC has given a special boost to the scheme’s Skills Acquisition and Entrepreneural Development ( SAED) center, while work on the North-Central SAED center is actively pursued. Some Corps members who have passed through it in the last two years have become employers of labour. And Gen.
Ibrahim plans to beef it, through an NYSC Trust Fund Legislation from the National Assembly, which will offer passing out Corps members loans to fund their private businesses.
When COVID-19 attacked Nigeria in February 2020, the NYSC under the strict avant garde of Gen. Ibrahim were at the doorsteps of Nigerians to offer philanthropic services. For the first time, Corps members came out en masse for public sensitisation. It never stopped at it.
The NYSC also produced and distributed free of charge, facemasks, hand sanitisers and liquid soaps as part of their patriotic contributions to the national battle against COVID-19. It happened only under Gen. Ibrahim. We never saw the contributions of Corps members when Ebola struck us years back.
Indeed, Ibrahim is a leadership genius. Other leaders at lower rungs in Nigeria should emulate the DG-NYSC and his management team of competent professionals in human development for thinking outside the box.
Prince is a Public Affairs analyst based in Abuja.