People are the Wealth of the Nation

People are the Wealth of the Nation  (1959) 
by Haile Selassie, translated by Haile Selassie I Press

The prosperity of each individual constitutes the wealth of our nation which will eventually enable us to expand the schools and hospitals we have established for the welfare of our people. The expansion of public health services will decrease the mortality rate and increase our population.

Just as a farm that is not taken care of cannot be free of weeds, so is also the development of a society. It cannot be denied that there are some people who have scrupulously or unscrupulously attempted to acquire or have succeeded in acquiring wealth. If the wealth of a person is not for the general welfare, what will he gain for himself and his offspring but grudging and hatred? The fruits of one's sweat and mental labour are always rewarding, not only to oneself but also to succeeding generations. Be resolute in your work and attempt to complete whatever you undertake; if you face failure, try again and persist in your determination to attain your aim. Develop a healthy pursuit of life and do not limit your efforts to satisfying your selfish desires.

Our youth, in particular, must be steadfast and take advantage of the benefits of modern civilisation. Do not fall a prey to idleness, for it will be a curse to you and to succeeding generations. You must set yourselves up as examples of determination and hard work. Plan your time and use both your physical and mental powers purposefully and productively.

We must remember that man's achievements in the field of wireless communications, aviation, medical science and many other fields have been accomplished through the ages by patience and hard work, diligence, perseverance and tenacity. It is in the light of these facts that we urge our youth to struggle constantly and unceasingly to achieve their aims.

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