For their exceptional academic performance, some Nigerian teenagers have been given the rare opportunity to lead whole states in the capacity of a governor and empowered to take importation decisions as such.
Although these youths were allowed to occupy the governors’ seats in their various states for not more than a day, the honour helps to concretise hopes that the future truly belongs to the coming generation.
1. Atika Aminu Yankaba (Kano)
After taking over as the governor of the northern state, Yankaba convened a State Executive Council meeting with her new cabinet members and prioritise girl child education in the agenda.
At the meeting, Governor Yankaba noted that there is a need for the state to channel more funds into the building of more public schools, employ capable teachers, and sustain ICT education.
2. Aisha Katagum (Bauchi)
As part of the celebration of the 2021 International Day of the Girl Child, Governor Bala Abdulkadir Mohammed of Bauchi on Tuesday, October 12, vacated his seat for Aisha Katagum (14-year-old) of the Government Junior Secondary School, Katagum.
Bala explained that he handed power over to Aisha and other young girls who were temporary members of the State Executive Council in a bid to encourage them to aim higher in their academic pursuits.
3. Nicholas Ogunji (Abia)
Another teenager, Nicholas Ogunji, also enjoyed the same privilege in 2020 when Governor Okezie Ikpeazu left the seat for him for a day.
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A 17-year-old student of Adventist Technical Secondary School Ogunji, who became the state’s first male one-day governor was said to have freed some prisoners at the Afaraukwu Correctional Centre after paying their fines.
4. Jemimah Marcus (Lagos)
As a resounding honour after emerging as the winner of the Lagos Spelling Bee competition in 2020, Jemimah Marcus, a 16-year-old student of Angus Memorial Senior High School, also had the opportunity of becoming a one-day governor of the state.
5. Chineme Joy Ota (Abia)
An orphan with tremendous academic talent, Chineme Joy Ota was an 18-year-old student of Ohafia Girls Model Secondary School in Abia when she was given the opportunity to be a one-day governor of the state in 2018.
Speaking with her 20-member cabinet at the time, Governor Ota spoke on the establishment of a youth-friendly centre in the state to tackle cases of child abuse.
The governor recalled that as an orphan at a tender age, she was a victim of child abuse.
6. Edun Olabanji (Lagos)
During the former Governor Babatunde Fashola-led administration of Lagos, Ebun Olabanji, then a 15-year-old student of Army Children’s Senior Secondary School, and the son of a carpenter, became a one-day leader of the state for winning the Spelling Bee competition in 2014.
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Meanwhile, the Governor of Kogi State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, had said that time is ripe for the younger generation to take over from the elders who were holding power at the federal level.
Receiving the leadership of the Nigerian Guild of Editors (NGE) led by its president, Mustapha Isa at the Kogi state Governor’s Lodge in Abuja, on Tuesday, September 28, Governor Bello said there is need for the youth to take over the affairs of the country.
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Bello noted that the the issue of power shift to another region was borne out of ethnic sentiment and breaches the provisions of the constitution.