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Onaiyekan calls for national conference to address brain drain

He said brain drain and other issues affecting Nigerian youths had become issues of national emergency that required concerted efforts to tackle.

• July 29, 2023
Cardinal John Onaiyekan

John Onaiyekan, the Catholic Bishop Emeritus of Abuja Archdiocese, has called for a national conference to address the increasing brain drain problem, particularly among Nigerian youths.

Mr Onaiyekan made the call when he received a delegation from the Initiative for Fostering Unity in Diversity, Youths and Nation Building (IFFUIDYANB) in Abuja on Friday.

He said brain drain and other issues affecting Nigerian youths had become issues of national emergency that required concerted efforts to tackle.

“It is scary how Nigeria is losing a lot of its resourceful youths to other countries because they do not see a future for themselves in this country,” said Mr Onaiyekan.

The cleric said further that “the situation cannot be patched up with new policies; it is more than that.

“We know our country is polarised, divided and broken, so there is a need for some kind of forum to bring us together to discuss the best ways out of this scary situation.

“My concern is, who will bell the cat as they say because we have leaders who are anxious to convince us that they are doing very well.

“They are living in complete denial, and that will not solve the problem.”

On fears that even if a national conference were convened, it would go the way of previous conferences, where resolutions were not implemented, Onaiyekan said things must change.

According to him, it is better to continue to make efforts and push for the implementation of resolutions for national development than do nothing for fear of non-implementation.

The cleric commended IFFUIDYANB for coming up with the ”Naija Unity House Initiative” to foster national unity among the younger generation of Nigerians.

Mr Onaiyekan said that the initiative would foster unity and peace and engage youths in critical discussions on youth and national development.

(NAN)

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