Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, has urged young people to learn from history rather than repeat it or allow it to risk a better future.
As Liberian President George Weah, his deputy and different Liberian groups welcomed, they decorated the Nigerian Vice President with traditional accolades and awards at a youth forum in Monrovia on Monday.
The Vice President of Nigeria was the Special Guest of Honor at a youth forum to mark the 60th birthday of the Vice President of Liberia, Dr. Jewel Howard-Taylor.
According to a statement by Osinbajo’s press aide Laolu Akande, President Weah received the Vice President for the first time in Monrovia, who chatted with him and welcomed him to the West African nation, expressing appreciation for the one-day visit. of the vice president
Later, in the youth forum theme “Conversation with the Vice President and Youth”, Dr. Howard-Taylor, in her welcoming remarks, described her Nigerian counterpart as a humble and selfless leader who inspires hope for a more better.
Praising Prof. Osinbajo, Dr. Howard-Taylor said “he is the most humble politician in Africa” noting that emerging leaders across the continent have much to learn from his humility and commitment to service.
Also at the event, Vice President Osinbajo was honored with a Distinguished Service to Humanity award, for his exemplary service to the development of Nigeria, Liberia, West Africa and the rest of the continent, by young Liberians, of whom some 400 were part of the event.
Presenting the award plaque to the Vice President, event co-host and youth activist Mr. Benjamin Sanvee said the award was in recognition of “all his service, all that he has done and will continue to do”.
According to him, “this is a deep appreciation for years of stellar service to Nigeria, Liberia, the ECOWAS region, the continent of Africa and the world at large. We, the youth of Liberia and, by extension, the youth of Africa, are proud to present you with this symbol of appreciation.
“You are a shining example of an exceptional, selfless and exemplary leader, who is quiet and constant, not only a source of inspiration to the youth of Africa, but you have impacted the lives of millions across the continent in so many ways.
“You are a rare and outstanding leader and we thank you for all you do and will continue to do. I present this plaque to you, on behalf of young Africans, as one of Africa’s most outstanding leaders,” added the youth leader.
In addition, Prof. Osinbajo was awarded at the event with the traditional title of “Chief Flomo Barwolor”, which means “the light for the people”. This traditional title was presented by a Liberian cultural group headed by Ambassador Madam Julee Endee.
Answering questions earlier during the conversation with the young Liberians, Vice President Osinbajo spoke about learning from past experiences.
According to him “every sensible person learns from history more than from experience, because if you wait to learn from experience, you will suffer. What you’re supposed to do with history and your past is learn from it and never let it repeat itself.”
He continued: “One of the most important things for young people is that they have to keep in mind all the time that their story is not their destiny, it is just part of their story. Your destiny is what you have decided, where you are going and will arrive as long as you do not allow the tyrant and oppressor of history to stop you.
Encouraging the youth in the room, the vice president urged them to take advantage of the opportunities offered by emerging technologies to improve educationally and economically, noting that the benefits of technological innovations are numerous.
For example, when asked about the impact and prevalence of social networks, Professor Osinbajo said: “I think that social networks are a blessing for everyone, not only for politicians but also for the electorate and others. Platforms are so crucial to be able to communicate and it’s also important to recognize that each generation has its own technology.
“It has its abuses and drawbacks, but you have to make sure you maximize its real advantages. One of the main advantages is that for people like us born decades ago, to do simple research, you would have to go to a library. Today, I can do all my research with just my iPad, while sitting pretty much anywhere, as long as I have an Internet connection.”
Prof. Osinbajo added that “young people are at the most advanced moment in the history of humanity. One of the cool things is that your smartphones have more computing power than all the computing power that brought the Apollo 11 spacecraft to the moon.
“In terms of advancement, this generation doesn’t compare to any that came before it. We, who are older than you, enjoy the technology of your generation, and I hope and pray that you will take full advantage of it to broaden your knowledge and the scope of your activities, and to broaden your business and your communication with others.”
The forum was also attended by the First Lady of Sierra Leone, Madame Fatima Maada Bio. She praised Prof. Osinbajo for his exemplary leadership, especially in promoting the cause of a better Africa for all. She also answered questions and interacted with the youth in the forum, sharing the platform with the Vice Presidents of Nigeria and Liberia.
In addition, during her stay in Monrovia, Professor Osinbajo made a brief stop at the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf Presidential Center for Women’s Development, to participate in the ECOWAS Human Rights Day program, which also coincided with the fifth anniversary of Mrs. Sirleaf’s presidency.
In his remarks there, Prof. Osinbajo applauded the former Liberian president’s contributions to the country’s development both in and out of office, noting that “one of the things he has been able to show is not just that it is possible to serve well, but also to serve out of office and perhaps do more.
“What he has done since leaving office has perhaps had the most impact, especially in Africa, and we are really proud of the work he has done and his achievements. We pray that there will be even greater achievements in the future,” added the vice president.
Former President Sirleaf welcomed the Vice President to Liberia and urged him to ensure more female participation in government and politics in Africa.
Prof. Osinbajo was accompanied to the meeting with former President Sirleaf by his host and Liberian counterpart.