THE recent high rate of sudden death of corps members through avoidable tragedies is pathetic and unacceptable. It paints a picture of failure in the proper monitoring and training of our youths.
TRAGEDY struck two weeks ago when nine corps members who were serving in Taraba State drowned in River Mayo-Selbe in Gashaka Local Government Area of the state.
THE corps members had on Saturday, August 4th, 2018 left their places of primary assignment and embarked on a picnic at the site before the unfortunate incident.
THE incident was said to have been caused by the sudden increase and surge of the river Mayo Selbe.
ACCORDING to the Taraba State Police Public Relations Officer, ASP David Missal, who confirmed the death of the nine out of the twenty-two Corps Members who were involved in the incident, said seven bodies were so far recovered from the river.
IT is saddening that this incident happened just about three months after Mr. Ojeshola Taofeek, a member of the NYSC who just passed out from the service, drowned in Nembe River in the Nembe Local Government Area of Bayelsa State.
THE tragic incident occurred when the deceased, who hailed from Osun State went to the Ogbolomabiri jetty to take pictures of the water side as part of his fun memories during the service.
THESE deaths are too many. They are also unfortunate and regrettable. Parts of the NYSC objectives are to inculcate discipline and develop in the Nigerian youths the attitude of mind, acquired through shared experience and suitable training which will make them more amenable to mobilisation in the national interest. The one year mandatory service is for the inculcation in the nation’s youth, positive citizenship and leadership values, ideals of committed service, constructive engagement, patriotism, diligence and the commitment to the common good, but in reality, the reverse are the cases.
Many of our corps members are now preoccupied with jamborees, embark on unauthorised journeys and with very poor orientation on hardwork, patriotism and leadership values.
Promising corps members are frequently losing their dear lives to incidents that could have been avoided.
IT is quite a terrible experience for parents to nurture their wards from cradle to university level, and when it is time to settle and enjoy their labour only to receive their dead bodies to be brought home for burial.
NIGERIA had witnessed similar experience of avoidable deaths of Corps members who died while serving their fatherland. It is of note that some years ago a corps member drowned in a boat mishap in Okpotuwari community in Southern Ijaw Local Government Area of Bayelsa State when the canoe he boarded capsized.
THESE were an avoidable deaths and if NYSC authorities are alive to their responsibility, they should know that this is a rainy season when water level is high and ocean surge is prominent at this time of the year and sounded a note of warning to them.
AGAIN corps members without no knowledge of swimming should not be allowed to embark on picnic by the riverside. If they must, guards should follow them to dish out instructions against any danger.
THE HOPE sympathizes with the families of the deceased corps members and pray that God will console them and give them the courage to bear the irreparable loss.
AGAIN, we sympathise with NYSC on this great calamity that befall the corps, praying that affliction will not strike the corps again.
THE HOPE commiserates with states that have lost their loved ones in those calamities and suggest a reorientation of our corps members, praying that such would be the last.