Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on Thursday revealed that former Lagos State governor and national Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, gave him his first ever political appointment as Attorney-General of the state.
He narrated his political journey from his youth years and how he joined several pressure groups before becoming the Attorney-General of Lagos State, a position he held from 1999 to 2007.
Osinbajo disclosed this while addressing young political aspirants of the APC at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Wednesday night.
“As a young person, I belonged to several pressure groups. I graduated at the age of 21. And when I graduated, I began to participate in various pressure groups, human rights organisations, anti-corruption, civil society groups of every kind.,” Mr Osinbajo said, according to a statement by his spokesperson, Laolu Akande.
Osinbajo explained that his appointment Tinubu administration was his first involvement in government.
“When political parties started forming, we could not aspire, but we remained involved. My first involvement in government was when I was appointed as Attorney-General in Lagos State.
“For seven years – after serving as Lagos Attorney-General – I was part of the party, I did not have a board appointment or anything, but I kept working for the party.
“I kept working for the party as a lawyer. Most of those cases, we were not paid a dime. But we went from place to place.
“Sometimes, we didn’t even have a place to stay when we went to court the next morning. So, there is a measure of paying the price, it depends on how serious or committed we are to some of the things we say we are committed to,” he said.
The vice president called on the young people to stay committed and make sacrifices, urging them to help build party structures and contribute to nation building in their various constituencies, through active involvement in politics.
“We are in a place where we are the ones who can make the difference; nothing is going to change overnight, but we can make efforts to change the process.
“We can do a lot more, but it depends on our commitment. I like the idea of young people getting a quota in the party structure to run for office on some level, such as the state houses of Assembly,” he added.
In a related development, Osinbajo on Thursday said 500,000 graduates have so far been engaged under the federal government’s N-power programme.
He disclosed this at a conference organised by United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) in Abuja.
He said the government of President Muhammadu Buhari had introduced various intervention programmes to empower women and youth in order reduce unemployment and poverty.
The vice-president added that about 400,000 Nigerians were currently benefiting from the conditional cash transfer scheme of the government.
Osinbajo also said at least 9.2 million children were being fed daily under the federal government’s school feeding programme.
He said that the states that keyed into the programme had risen from 25 to 26 as at this month.
Osinbajo said to avoid “the time bomb”, the government must build economy that would support the growing population of the country.
He said gaining economic advantage involved national consensus and individual families must key into this programme of achieving democratic dividends.
Osinbajo added that it is now the business of heads of families to prioritise the education and health of their dependents.
The vice president, who emphasised the need to invest in people through social inclusion, said getting the country out of poverty was a task involving planning, physical and discipline.
“This government is committed and determined to take the country out of the current challenges therefore religious leaders must play their roles because no real progress will take place without their involvement,” he said.
“They have strong voice and they have responsibility to hold government accountable to ensure resources go round and meet the needs of the people.”
Osinbajo thanked UNFPA and other partners for organising the conference, saying religious leaders needed to know the prevailing policy issues concerning the DD.
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