CLARION CALL IS FOR A PURPOSE
After the Second World War, the United States (US) and the Soviet Union – USSR (now Russia) competed to see who had the best technology in space. USSR sent the first satellite to space in October 4, 1957 and the first manned spacecraft in April 12, 1961. In less than a month (May 5, 1961), US also sent own first crewed spacecraft. It was also at this period that the then US President J.F. Kennedy (JFK) declared that US will put a man on the moon within a decade. For this and subsequent missions, NASA Space Center was established around 1961.
During one of his visits there, JFK saw a janitor (doorman) holding a broom. So curious JFK, walked to the man and asked, “Sir, what are you doing with broom?” The Janitor answered, “Mr. President, I am trying to put a man on the moon.”
No doubt the janitor has realized that he is needed by his country. He has discovered a sense of purpose in the work he does. I am pretty sure the janitor would be proud of himself and country after the first American landed on the moon in July 21, 1969. American won the space race because of people like the janitor who have developed a sense of purpose.
Around 1973, 3 years after the end of Nigeria Civil war, the then Military Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon saw a need to reunite and rebuild the nation. So he started the NYSC scheme with an agenda to reconcile, reconstruct and rebuild a divided nation – Nigeria. Graduates are mobilized for this purpose.
This implies that Nigerian graduates called for service are found capable and needed, and for this reason we have been called to serve their fatherland. They are not merely serving because it is mandatory but because they love to see their dear nation heal and get back stronger.
At these trying moments, our nation needs us more than ever. We owe those who have entrusted us with this “great commission”. We have a debt to pay to those who came before us and had diligently served our fatherland and to those currently serving in the various places we came from and contributing greatly to those regions. And also to those ones coming behind us and looking to us as guiding light, we should not let down.
Actually, we have done the hard parts by leaving behind businesses, opportunities to travel abroad, love life at its incubation stage or investment opportunities. A few of us have lost loved ones – we could not even travel to pay our last respects. Now we are at our PPA hoping the service year will end quickly. Truly, the service year will end but our service to our nation should never end. While you are there at your station, try to make the moment count.
NYSC have platforms through which its set objectives would be achieved. A notable one is CDS (Community Development Service). CDS group meetings give opportunity to rub minds and share ideas. We need to start working on community targeted projects that can help raised the standard of our host communities. No matter how small our projects or activities may seems, it would still contribute to national growth. Let us be like that janitor doing everything to make our country win.
ADEREHINWO ADENIYI ADEBOWALE,
Corps Member Serving in Argungu, Kebbi State (2021 – 2022).