Nigerians react as reps schedule a second reading of the bill
Forty-eight years after the establishment of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), the House of Representatives is considering scrapping the scheme.
NYSC was established on May 22, 1973, by the military regime of General Yakubu Gowon under Decree No. 24 of 1973 as a way of reconciling and reintegrating Nigerians after the civil war between July 6, 1967, and January 15, 1970.
The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Alteration Bill, 2020, which is seeking to repeal the NYSC Act, is billed for the second reading.
According to the sponsor of the bill, Mr. Awaji-Inombek Abiante, in the explanatory memorandum of the proposal, he listed the various reasons why the NYSC should be scrapped.
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It read in part, “This bill seeks to repeal Section 315(5)(a) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, (as amended) on the following grounds:
- The incessant killing of innocent corps members in some parts of the country due to banditry, religious extremism, and ethnic violence; incessant kidnapping of innocent corps members across the country
- Public and private agencies/departments are no longer recruiting able and qualified Nigerian youths, thus relying heavily on the availability of corps members who are not being well remunerated and get discarded with impunity at the end of their service year without any hope of being gainfully employed
- Due to insecurity across the country, the National Youth Service Corps management now considers posting corps members to their geopolitical zone, thus defeating one of the objectives of setting up the service corps, i.e. developing common ties among the Nigerian youths and promoting national unity and integration.
In reaction to the news, Nigerians took to Twitter to express their views on the proposal