Meeting late fiery human rights activists, Chief Gani Fawehinmi was a morale booster for the former presidential candidate of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu, he admitted at the weekend adding that Fawehinmi’s mentorship helped him in shaping his ideological stance.
Ribadu, who spoke at a mentoring programme organised by the Group of Patriotic Corpers (GPC) and #AdoptATweep in Abuja at the weekend, said he meet the reputable lawyer while serving as a pupil lawyer at the military Special Investigative Panel during the short-lived Buhari/Idiagbon regime.
Late Fawehinmi, according to Ribadu, provided him with critical advices and mentorship lessons that continue to serve as his guiding lights to this day. He said it was from Fawehinmi that he renewed his resolve to continue to fight the cause of the poor and subsequently join the Nigerian Police Force.
He therefore underscored the importance of mentoring young ones which, he said, could surpassed what one can learn from formal school. “A Chinese saying has it that discussing with an experienced person is worth more than 10 years of education. It is therefore good to always relay one’s experience to the younger ones,” he said.
Ribadu admonished the youth to make right choices at early stage of their career by choosing to live a humble and exemplary life than a life of material accumulation which, he said, does not guarantee eternal happiness if acquired through corrupt means.
He also asked youths not to lose hope of rebuilding the country but said that they required a strong will and incorruptible life to salvage the nation, adding that the resolve has to be made at an early age.
” My success at the EFCC, especially in resisting all tempting offers and calls to bend the rules was a direct result of my bow from when I was like you that I will never be corrupt.
“I resented corruption not by lips of mouth but by personal conduct. I refused to be bribed or compromised throughout my public service career. Yet, I am ever happy with myself. I have no regrets that I don’t have mansions all over the world or own a private jet. I drive happiness from contentment and the feeling that what I possess are things I genuinely earn. You can make similar resolve today,” he said.
He charged the youths to conduct audit of their abilities before making career choice, which is a life time decision. “Therefore, if you really wish to be a home-builder, one possessed by a desire to change our realities, then you have to conduct a self-assessment. Look into your strengths and weaknesses and then take decision on whether to follow the left or the right path that leads to integrity, self-satisfaction and reputation that could outlive generations.”
“Collectively, you should come together in reforming all the things that ought to be reformed; your generation must come out with a blueprint, and that has to include breaking down the walls of ethnic, religious and regional advocacies and presenting leaders ready to represent your interests. If you don’t make any sacrifice to correct the ills, how do you expect a change? It’s your responsibility to demand for a Nigeria of your will, a Nigeria where opportunities are there for those who strive for excellence. But essentially, that Nigeria begins with your personal will, it begins now”