By Steph Tony.
The world is a tough place and the future of people depend on the creativity, talents and skill of the under-40 years old generation. Taraba cannot be left out.
The future of our beloved state depends on it.
Poetry, music, writing, dance, events and show planning, arts, acting…….these are ways that most youth make a living during festive seasons.
The New Year is here again and the youth of Taraba State have to wait for ‘Elders’ to give them pocket money when people like:
- Olamide is paid N3million to perform at events and weddings
- Chidinma gets paid N2million to perform at bank events,
- Basketmouth gets N5million for gracing end-of-year comedy shows,
- MI gets 5million for holding a microphone and dazzling people…….
- Our own young people in Taraba, on the other hand, get paid N2,000……..sometimes N5,000 and when they’re very lucky N10,000.
What the clients say is, ‘Just manage this. You know this is Taraba…..there is no money’.
Sometimes, I wonder why we aren’t ashamed of making that statement, ‘You know this is Taraba’. It’s almost as if since this is Taraba nothing good can come out of it.
We keep singing that we are blessed with a beautiful state and wonderful landscape and very talented and gifted youth, but we also keep making that fatal error. Nobody can make your house beautiful if you don’t make the attempt to make it beautiful yourself.
Individuals and small corporate bodies like:
- Newrock Empire (Jibola),
- World of Colours (Andrew),
- Shakatawa Events,
- Zaman Peace Movement (Charlee Nathan),
- Taraba Talent Development Initiative (Franklin Felixson),
- Big Shark,
- Taraba State Entertainment Industry,
- Jalingo City Awards,
- Taraba Social Media Pioneers, etc……who have all spent body, sweat, financial and mental resources to raise the youth of Taraba to a status of living where they can fend for themselves, but only very few people and government bodies even remotely show any interest in what these people are doing.
They keep doing the job of the government without any reasonable support from the government or well-meaning members of society.
Have we ever wondered why the celebrities in Lagos are well paid?
It’s because their host communities have invested in the futures of these young men and women. That is why a Wizkid can have 10 events during a festive season, each fetching him an average of N3million while a Charlee Nathan sometimes barely gets a measly N50,000 shelled at him…. while a Triple S will be begged with N5,000….. while Big Shark will be called aside and given ‘keke money’……..all because ‘This is Taraba’.
We are not saying millions should be paid immediately, in fact, we as a state are really a long way from there….but what we’re saying is we should begin to appreciate our future banner holders and support them.
Tese people could be out on the streets robbing us blind, breaking into our homes, killing for money…..yet they have decided that they would be law abiding and peace loving, and that they will make a respectable living entertaining us and helping us relax.
Our ‘elders’ in Taraba think the youth don’t see some things, that they don’t hear some things…… they think that success and wealth belong to only them and their children that they have sent abroad with Taraba State money and money made from their service to the state……. they forget what makes the Lagos people tick: When the youth of the land shine, we all shine.
Our elders have neglected the general problems of the youth.
They ride the latest cars, live in beautiful houses, get the juiciest projects even before the general public hear (yes, the youth hear of the coded projects), and preach contentment to a sea of hungry and side-lined youth……..
They are killing the future of the state.
What happens when the youth are disenchanted and frustrated? When they get their own opportunities they ‘chop’ all they can without caring if any other person is hungry. Does that sound familiar? That’s exactly what the current ‘elders’ are doing to the youth.
That means someone did it to them before, and they’re repeating the cycle……..but we the youth of today will not be like our current ‘elders’. No Sir, we won’t.
We’re too blessed for that……. Too talented…… Too gifted…. We will keep looking for more ways to work hard, put money in our pockets and make Taraba great.