Many Nigerians are marking #NYSC at 50, sharing throwback photos from their service year on social media to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the program.
Founded in May 1973, the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC was created by then military Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon to promote nation-building and the development of the country.
The scheme requires corp members to complete a two-week orientation exercise in a state different from their state of origin before deployment to their Primary Place of Assignment, PPA to serve the country for a year.
While the scheme may have recorded several gains in fostering social cohesion and unity; critics have mostly argued its continued relevance following cases of kidnap, death...etc, of corp members due to rising insecurity across the country.
The NYSC has outlived its usefulness, a caller named Dandyson said on Nigeria Info’s #MorningCrossfire.
He argued that the gains of the scheme can still be achieved without a mandatory one-year service. Dandyson also alleged that the program is riddled with corruption and should be reformed but not scrapped.
Another caller named Salvation says the government has retained the scheme for 50 years because it is a form of cheap labour. He claims most employers do not employ anticipating the deployment of corp members to their organisations.
Meanwhile, this caller, Nnamdi says the scheme is more relevant today than it was 50 years ago calling for a rebranding to reflect the current times.
He also urged the government to address the insecurity challenges facing the country to ensure the safety of corp members.