Not long ago, the key mouthpiece for the youth on national development was the student front. Rarely would an issue come up without these critical bodies making inputs and offering solutions to government and the nation. It was through such platforms that now politicians like Haruna Idirisu (Minister), Omane Boamah (Minister), Ano Dompreh (MP) among many others cut their teeth.
Being in a tertiary institution is to be at the highest institution on the land. The nation does not only expect you to learn and acquire certificates but to offer an intellectual voice to developmental issues necessary for moving the nation forward.
Today, NUGS, GNUPS, CETTAG and foremost national students bodies have mostly become appendages of government and or political parties. They have all gone soft and silent on issues of national development. When was the last time these bodies commented on national development? Budgets are passed without a position from them. The nation is faced with economic mismanagement and other challenges but sadly, student unions have no opinions to offer. The current energy crisis could be a platform for NUGS and other Student Unions to rally the experts among their ranks to offer their solutions to the government and the nation at large.
It is time for student unions to rise up and be taken serious by the government, politicians and be of use to their ranks. NUGS and the other national unions occupy a unique position to be a voice not only for the youth but for the nation against economic hardship and other challenges within the society.
Commenting on national issues, taking on the government and opposition parties alike are critical areas, student unions can help to shape national dialogue and further drive youth issues to the forefront of national development. It is time to act. NUGS, GNUPS and other national student unions must take up the challenge and act now. There are lots of issues for national student unions to run with for a decade. This is the time for Student Unions to show leadership in debates on national issues.
Author of the Books “THE AFRICAN YOUTH QUESTION, & DREAMS OF OUR YOUTH” and AFAG Gen. Secretary
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