Yesterday we published the substance of the memo to Bolanle Austen Peters, Naira Marley, Kunle Afolayan, Olamide and Ben Chiadika about the LCBs. While the idea will certainly impact on a significant number of our LCBs, it will not ‘take’ all of them. There is need to develop other ‘vehicles’ to carry those who will be ‘left behind’ by Bolanle, Marley, Kunle, Olamide and Chiadika.
As they ‘absorb’ the actors, dancers, musicians and other entertainers among the LCBs, weneed a similar vehicle to ‘absorb’ those LCBs who can become state/national table-soccer champions; those who can become state/national beach football champions; those who can become state/national snooker champions, or state/national champions of innovative games and sporting activities that play to the unique strengths of some of these LCBs. Some of these LCBs are ardent fans of many football teams in Europe. They are supposedly some of the biggest contributors to betting activities involving many of these teams.
What if there are well thought out games and innovative sporting activities centered around these fans? Several spin-offs may be created for one single successful unit of sporting activity with the multiplier effect on the rest of society.
The challenge here is to expand the number of ‘buckets’ available to absorb the abundant energy in many youths in the country. The more the ‘buckets’ the better for any society. Nigeria is a one of those societies with very few and limited buckets. So, the competition for the available few is quite fierce and intense, in some cases. Seeing that many of the LCBs have already been ‘disqualified’ from access to the few available buckets owing to lack of or poor formal education, lack of some common in-demand skills, etc, it has become imperative to develop other buckets that will absorb them, dignify them, empower them and enable them make useful contributions to the development of society.
One of the beautiful things leaders in the west and far east have done over time, is create the conditions necessary for the development of different kinds of ‘buckets’ to absorb different interests and inclinations in their societies. Imagine the west or far east without their sporting activities or entertainment culture? Imagine the vast employment opportunities that have been created for their nationals through these activities. Think of the spin-offs and those who make a living maintaining the various components of those supra-structures.
Think Israel Adesanya for a moment. Look at the ‘bucket’ in which he chose to distinguish himself. Think of the many who earn their living because of his success. Can anyone bet against the fact that there are other Israel Adesanyas among our LCBs?
Can we not find dignifying engagements and routes to success for those individuals who our actions/inactions have ‘weeded away’ from the more popular paths to ‘conventional success?’ Can we not find dignifying engagements for those individuals without any kind of formal education but who may possess other qualities that may sparkle in some activities? Just the other day, someone kicked himself on social media. A world-famous superstar made a gaffe, which went viral. The gentleman penned his reaction but concluded, ‘Who my English epp?’ The world-famous superstar may not know how to string correct sentences together but when he’s inside his bucket doing his thing, the best composers of prose and most eloquent speakers of English acknowledge and respect his genius. It is reported that Floyd Mayweather once responded to those who teased him that he could no spell by flashing a huge check with his signature. He might not be able to spell but he could sign fat checks.