Kingsley Chukwujindu is a Warri-brought up brlliant student who determined to work in Shell one day. This motivation came when his school close to Shell area in Warri had no water and te principal got the permit of Shell to send the boys to go fetch water. There, then 10-year-old Kindsley saw heaven on earth and resolved right there to one day work in Shell. He set the plans which began with studying harder to get pass well in college, get a 2.1 in the university, get a good masters’s degree, apply online, getting through tests, and qualifying for an interview. He calls it getting the point of differentiation.
He now works in Shell, but looks back to find that most other Niger Delta youths did not follow the route he followed and ended up disgrunted, and later to violence. He has seen the much violence could fetch to the boys but feels this has rather caused more harm than good ; to the boys, to Shell and to the economy.
Kingsley Chukwujindu is now the Community Interface Manager of Shell. He has joined a group of experts going round to educate the youths of the region. He suports the idea of setting up a formal academy where experts could teach the youth on how to lead a better life. This could save those who want to be saved. His strategy which he shared with his wife upon retunr to Nigeria is to paint his corner of Nigeria, hoping that others would paint their own corners. He has been to Iraq of all places but finds that pipelines are on the surface, yet none is touched or destroyed despite the higher level of hunger there. He says its about contentment.
Speaking to the youths last week Thursday at the Shell RA after a retreat with 70 youth leaders from the Land East Hub, the Community Interface Manager said life can be lived by design or also by the wind. Living by the wind implies having no vision and going wherever the wind blows.
People are angry with the president for saying the youths are lazy, but they are not doing anything about it. They are only saying he is wrong but they are not proving him wrong
The rate of destruction of public assets is too high. We are not the only hungry on earth. Iraq does not burry pipelines, they are all on the surface, yet, the hunger there is out of this world. I have been there for five years. Nobody breaks any pipeline. Its about self-contentmen.
You can live by design, not by the wind (accident). Our youths in the oil region must realise that this discussion about oil everyday will end in the next 10 to 20 years. Other alternatives are here. Alternative energy is the new energy.
Use your head, do not embrace idleness ; do not accept a life of idleness from morning to night ; sleep 18 hours, watch movies three hours, play three hours. How can health, strong and able-bodied people afford to stay idle daily ; it is life without a vision.
Ambition is not vision : I want to be a local council chairman is am bition, not vision. I want to change my local government ; and I need to be the local council chairman to do this. This is a vision.
Life is not about size of your body. Big bodied men work ; brainy people leadIf you think, ideas will come. If you do not set aside at least one hour everyday to think, you wont have a vision. Life with a purpose is a visionary one.
Example ; at 10 years of age in Warri, I desired to work in Shell ; I found out what was needed, a 2.1 score. I set about reading to get it. Next, to pick up a master’s degree as advised. I did that. I waited for advertisement of their vacancies. I filled it, made it to written test, made it to interview stage, the point of differentiation. I knew nobody in Shell or anywhere that pushed me.
People should invest in human capital. Some parents borrow to send their children abroad, but some others borrow to buy big cars. Its a choice. Hellen Keller was blind and deaf but she was a professor, a teacher. She said ; the biggest enemy to vision is sight. What you see today may block your vision for tomorow.
The key to success : Think, Plan, Imagine things. My father used to say that he who has somebody in the market is better than he has money in the market. Build bridges, do not burn bridges.
Vision gives rise to expetataion/hope, questions your comfort zone, and creates a sense of urgency in you to meet targets, bring intensity and forces you to prioritise
Focus is like drops of water on a spot on concrete. Soon, it creates a hole there.
Chukwujindu tried to explain further in an exclusive interview outside the conference room.
What did you tell the youth leaders here today ?
I see Nigerian young people and in my head, the challenge they have is lack of vision. Because they dont know where they are going, they are hopeless and they turn to all manner of vices in their hopelessness. So, I say, lets see how we can start refocusing them and change the way they think.
I think our educational system does not provide the kind of platform to make people reach for what they have inside.
No mind that listened to you today that would not be affected ; do you think a kind of academy or institute can be set up in the Niger Delta to bring your type and talk to the young people in the region ?
It can be done. Yes, an academy where young people can pass through and be moulded into champions. The difference between a champion and a loser is what you see ahead of you. For now, lets use the platform we find to push the message.
How real is this vision you talked about ?
It is the ability to think or plan for your future with immagination and wisdom. It is your purpose in technicolour; you see what you can be, not what you are, and you are determined to be it. It takes planning and steps. You dont sit in your house and wait for your vision to come into reality. Work for it. Nothing will demotivate you if you pursue a vision.
Q : Why do you think Niger Delta youths lack vision ?
Its because of role models they see around them. They see people come into money without working for it. It creates a people that do not think but a gun in your hand, guts in your heart. We must change that narrative and tell people you do not need to have gun to succeed. It destroys you.
Who will drive this change you keep talking about ; the government, the companies, who ?
Look, when I came back from abroad, my heart was broken by what I saw. I said to my wife, I cant change Nigeria but I will paint my corner. If I paint my corner and you paint yours, sooner, it will become a buzz. Government has the pedestal to do that but I believe the churches and mosques have to look again, our educational curriculum has to be reviewed. People should know that work is not evil, not oppression. The man who introduced the concept of work is God. By the kind of mentality we have, the slave mentality, work is oppression. It is bad. When they give you work to do, you see oppresion. That is the narrative of the Niger Delta. We have to change that narrative one step at a time.