Twenty seven years have passed since our country got independence from the Ethiopian colonial rule. Through the sacrifices of thousands of great freedom fighters, we are celebrating the Independence week. Our fore fathers, brothers and sisters were real patriots of the country who dreamed of a free and sovereign state that came to reality. This particular day is a day we renew our commitment to the state we gained through heavy sacrifices.
There are various duties of a person towards the nation’s economic growth, development, national security, cleanliness, good governance, quality education, eradicating poverty, eradicating social problems, bringing gender equality, having respect for everyone and many more. A person has various duties in his/her life towards himself, family, parents, kids, wife, husband, neighbors, society, and community and, most importantly, towards the country. A person’s duties towards this country are very important to maintain its dignity, bright future, and lead it towards betterment. Our Independence Day commemoration is a resounding reminder of service to the nation.
This day calls us to perform duties of citizenship in the country in order to provide a bright future because any person or community reaps what they sow. It is a duty of every citizen to understand and perform all the responsibilities towards our country as daily routine or whenever required according to the type of duty. However, this mainly falls on the shoulder of the youth. The vision of our country lies in the hands of its youth because they are the main building blocks of a nation.
Young people are essential for the development of the country. Without youth a country can’t develop. The Youth are active and energetic. They can do any work in comparison to children and old people. Young people help to change the behavior of the people by providing them education. They can invent different scientific tools and technology in order to perform the developmental work easily. Young people help to increase the prestige and pride of the nation in the international arena. Therefore, this generation of youth have particular task that the current situation requires in all the development programs and in fighting challenges the state faces.
The state needs more efforts from its citizens, especially the youth, to make it free of corruption, free of social problems, crimes, poverty, and pollution. The youth need to understand thier duties towards the country instead of shouting and blaming the government. Each and every person is individually responsible for the growth and development in this country. People should never forget a famous quote by Lao Tzu that “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”. The struggle for independence started with one shot and few fighters with outdated guns who believed that as, Idris Awate famously said “the fire we are igniting today will be turned in to a big flame tomorrow”. They achieved a seemingly impossible thing at the time. The struggle for development, similarly, is the task of this generation. Everyone should be aware of his fundamental duties and follow without ignorance. We have to shoulder the development task and bring our country in the category of developed nations.
Today, Eritrea has laid the foundations for sustainable development. Right after independence many African states were plunged in the illusion of quick and overnight development. But, today they are still behind other states. One of the reasons for this was that the African states relatively failed to lay a solid ground for future development and nation building. The African states continued to depend on others even for their own development policies. The continued over-dependency phenomenon didn’t and will not take the states and their youth anywhere. They are mired in psychological colonization and are struggling to free colonial legacies. The youth must play a special role in changing this trend. Eritrea offers a different narrative in this sense, thanks to the farsighted vision of its government. It gives an immense hope to its people.
Eritrea, as a welfare state, has made sincere efforts to provide all facilities to the youth. Undoubtedly, there is an immense scope in the future too, given the latent talent of our youth. Yet, it also becomes the responsibility of the nation’s youth to contribute to the country’s growth and development. Today, it is heartening to see that many of our youth are graduating from colleges and technical schools and playing a key role in the development efforts of the nation. Our men and women are guarding the nation along its borders against any threat to the nation that are making us sleep safely.
Loyal citizens aim to remove all the social problems that hinder development, bring real independence in the country and work to make the country come under the category of developed countries. People working in the governmental projects must perform their duties loyally without wasting time as there is a true saying that “if we destroy time, time will destroy us”. Time never waits for anyone; it runs continuously and we should learn from the example of others. We should not stay until we get the goal in our life. The most important goal of our life is to make our country a great country. We should follow examples of the good. Eritrea is not different from other countries. It can produce courageous, hardworking, patriotic, intelligent people and at the same time it can have coward, treacherous, corrupt .etc. citizens but it is the patriotic and hardworking citizens that drive the nation towards real development at the end.
We should understand our duty towards the country. It’s we, not others, who are both the victim and the beneficiary of our activities towards the nation. Each and every activity affects us in positive and negative ways. We have to pay back our nation and people who are spending a significant amount of resources to educate us. This country needs more qualified engineers, plumbers, tailors, economists, journalists, doctors, teachers, etc. to lead us to our state-building schemes. However, to enable the youth become effective contributors to our developmental aspirations, all hands must be on deck in achieving this objective.
For the active participation of the young people in the national development, the support and encouragement by the government, the private sector, the civil society and parents play a key role.
The contribution of the Eritrean diaspora, who themselves have migrated due to the colonial suffering and its consequences, have been immense in attaining independence and safeguarding Eritrea’s sovereignty during the late Ethiopian offensive. As the third world countries in general suffer from brain drain, the diaspora youth’s participation and integration allows the opportunity of reversing the negative effects. If the integration of the Eritrean diaspora was not a necessity, the Eritrean government wouldn’t have recognized it as the “fourth developmental front”. Therefore, the youth must learn and work to contribute the way they like to their country and represent Eritrea to the outside world. If they are going to help their families back home, they first have to make sure that a peaceful Eritrea is there.
Vision Through Toil