FG Should Release Special Intervention Funds, Palliative For Youths In Creative Industries – Amb. Nihi
BY ANTHONY ADA ABRAHAM
Amb Oladele John Nihi who is currently the Honourable Commissioner for Youth Political Participation in Africa, Pan-African Youth Union (PYU), and founder , Little Miss Nigeria hails from Aiyegunle Gbede in Ijumu Local Government Area of Kogi State, Nigeria. In this interview within with ANTHONY ADA ABRAHAM, he speaks on why the FG must support the Creative Industry and other sundry issues.
How was growing up like?
I was born to the family of Chief Joshua and Madam Elizabeth Nihi on July 15, 1988. I obtained my first School Leaving Certificate from Model Primary School, Iyah, Iyah Gbede and West African Examination Certificate from Ogede Secondary School, Aiyetoro Gbede in 2007 both in Ijumu Local Government Area of Kogi State. Amb. Oladele John Nihi is a graduate of the prestigious Kogi State University, Anyigba, where I obtained a Bachelor of Science Degree in Political Science in the year 2011. My passion and belief in peaceful conflict resolution propelled me to go for higher studies in that discipline and I bagged a Masters Degree in Peace Studies & Conflict Resolution from the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) in 2016.
What have you been up to of late?
I’m a comrade to the core. I began getting involved in student and youth activism and rose to the top echelon in students and youth activities in Nigeria and abroad holding the following positions like Financial Secretary, National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN), National Body 2014; Pioneer Speaker, Student Union Government (SUG), Kogi State University, Anyigba, 2010/2011 academic session; President, National Association of Political Science Students (NAPSS), Kogi State University, Anyigba, 2009/2010 academic session; among others. I also served as the Chairman, National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN), Kogi State Chapter between 2017-2018.
You are known to be a champion for change, tell us about the organisation you founded to mitigate against social vices of the society?
As part of my contributions to the development of the socio-political landscape of my beloved country, Nigeria, I founded organisations that worked towards mitigating against some social ills. Amongst these are Youth Initiative Against Unlawful Emigration (YINAGUE) www.yinague.org which is involved basically in education and advocacy amongst youth and young people to resist the temptation to risk their lives through illegal routes and means of emigration. I have been involved in numerous peace-building activities and championed peaceful resolution of conflicts at various levels with a track record of outstanding successes. These has earned me various recognition and Merit Awards in different parts of the country. Some of them are Special Recognition as Kogi State Peace Ambassador Award by Kogi State Government; Award of Special Recognition by Nigerian Christian Youths Political Platform (NICHYPP); Prestige Anchor Leadership, Empowerment & Capacity Building Award by Nigeria Young Leaders Forum; Global Excellence in Leadership Award by National Association of Gbede Students; Youth Advocate & Peace Ambassador of the Year 2016 by African Stewardship Magazine; Kogi Youth Ambassadors Award by Kogi Female Youth Network; Community Service Award 2014 by Aiyegunle Gbede Student Union; among others.
Tell us about the pageant industry as a stakeholder…
As an entrepreneur with a special interest in Pageantry, I founded the prestigious Little Miss Nigeria www.littlemissnigeria.com with the objectives of promoting cultural and moral heritage of Nigeria and Africa. The pageant helped interested young girls boost their confidence and develop their potentials in pageantry and modeling.
How has Covid-19 affected the creative industry?
The creative industries particularly those who survive on daily income I must confess are the worst hit due to the lockdown occasion by Covid-19 Pandemic here in Nigeria. I’m using this opportunity to call on President Muhammadu Buhari to release Special Intervention Funds and Palliative for Nigerian Youths in the creative industries who in my view, are not captured in the ongoing disbursement of cash and food items as COVID-19 Palliative by the Honourable Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management & Social Development. No doubt, over 85 per cent of those involved in the increased crime and criminality witness in Lagos State in particular and across the country are Youths and even though not a justifiable reason, it’s as a result of hunger and quest for survival.
What has your organisation been doing to help the youths especially as this is your constituency?
Immediately the lockdown was announced by President Muhammadu Buhari, my office in partnership with African Youth International Development Foundation (AFYIDEF) with the support of African Union ECOSOCC in Nigeria came up with an initiative tagged Covid-19 African Youth Intervention Projects in Nigeria. Understanding that a drop makes an ocean and every little support will go a long way to assist youths, we commence fundraising to help identify the most vulnerable individuals and businesses that belongs to the youth who are badly affected with the COVID-19 pandemic and help them out, both now and after.
What’s your take on Association of Africa Creative Minds?
The group, Association of Africa Creative Minds is a welcome development and considering the calibre of her membership, I have no doubt that it will live to her objectives. I therefore call on corporate individuals, organisations, public and private sectors and particularly, the Nigeria Federal Ministry of Information and Culture to support this group and her activities.
Advice to the youths
My advice to the youths is to remain determine, resolute, keep hope alive and shun any act capable of inflicting more pains on Nigerians who are already going through a lot. This too shall pass