NYSC scheme and the spirit of discipline

Few days after arriving at the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, camp, the spirit of service had truly taken hold of everyone. During a drilling exercise, I met a beautiful and charming girl. Before diving into what happened between us, let me introduce another friend, a fellow corps member who studied at the University of Gloucestershire in the UK. 

We met on the third day of camp in the cafeteria, bonding over a food mishap. The menu included rice and fried fish, but my friend is allergic to fish. I persuaded him to try it, but the next day, he had an allergic reaction. I advised him to speak with the state coordinator. After an investigation from the appropriate quarters, the coordinator ensured he received alternative proteins like meat or eggs whenever fish was served. 

This experience made me realise that the NYSC camp is a home away from home, with coordinators and other NYSC officials ready to take care of corps members. Kudos to the state coordinators and other officials who are doing an excellent job of keeping the flag flying high!

Now, back to the beautiful girl. When I approached her with a joke, I walked towards her and made a joke, because for a dark complexion guy to start approaching a beautiful lady of such high status. 

 She initially responded with contempt but soon warmed up. I later learned that she was the daughter of a state governor. However, the real story began when she got into an argument and was rude to a soldier while they were trying to settle the dispute. Her behavior drew the attention of the state coordinator.

Despite knowing her identity, the state coordinator punished her and reported the incident to her father. This became the talk of the camp, and everyone eagerly awaited the governor’s response. The atmosphere was thick with anticipation as the governor announced his visit.

On a sunny day, the governor’s convoy entered the camp. He angrily went straight to the state coordinator’s office, and in front of everyone, he disciplined his daughter and ordered additional punishment from the soldiers. This left many of us feeling both shocked and impressed. Subsequently, she regretted her actions and apologized.

This incident was a powerful reminder that in the NYSC scheme, everyone is treated equally, regardless of their background. The governor’s actions underscored the NYSC’s commitment to discipline, fairness, and equality. It also reinforced the scheme’s role in fostering national unity and instilling the spirit of service among Nigerian youths.

The NYSC camp is not just about preaching peace and unity but also about ensuring equality and fairness. The governor’s daughter’s experience highlighted the importance of discipline and respect for authority, teaching all of us that our positions do not exempt us from the rules.

The NYSC scheme continues to play a vital role in maintaining the zeal and will of national service, bringing together young Nigerians from diverse backgrounds and fostering a sense of national pride and responsibility.

Haroon Aremu is a corp member with PRNigeria center, Abuja

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