Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Brig-Gen Shuaibu Ibrahim, has made a passionate appeal to corps members to resist any thought and avoid all company that could lead them to commit suicide.
Reacting to the case of corps member who committed suicide in Enugu last month, the NYSC DG disclosed that he has taken it as his personal responsibility to speak to the new corps members during his visits to orientations camp across the country.
Speaking to Daily Sun in Abuja, General Ibrahim also appealed to the corps members not to take the recent increment in their allowances as a windfall, begging them to deploy them into productive ends.
Asked his advice to the corps members considering the recent suicide incident in Enugu, Gen Ibrahim said: “During orientation course, when I go round the orientation camps, I usually use the opportunity to talk to the corps members to take life easy [and] work very hard because there is always reward for hard work.
“I always tell them to be law-abiding and listen to their parents’ advice. I always urge them to avoid bad company, peer groups, be good citizens and once they keep to the fact that life is full of ups and downs, to handle anything that comes.
“I always warn them no to think of taking their lives when the downs come. They have to rise at any point they fall down. There is always another opportunity. We have continued to discourage them from taking such action. It is not good at all,” he said.
On what he went through to effect the increment in the corps members allowance, he replied: “You know that when there is an increment in the minimum wage, corps members automatically benefit 10 per cent of the increment and that was what has happened.
“You also know that the Federal Government takes the welfare of the corps members very seriously. And that was why it seems the corps members are the first to benefit from the increment. Their allowance was first to be paid before others, which was an indication and confirmation that Mr President and the Federal Government are really concerned about the welfare of the corps members.
“The good thing is that some of the corps members have started well by deploying the increased allowances productively. Some of them already into skill acquisition have already started boosting their business with the increment. I have told them to be prudent.
“At their stage, they don’t need to start a business with N10 million. However, the increment, if well utilised, can turn around their future and fortune. All that they require is passion and hard work. They should endeavour to utilise the money properly,” he appealed.