Nigerians Of My Era Make Right Xhoices Of Leaders, Says Obasanjo

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Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has put side by side, the performances of Nigerian leaders post-independence and what is obtainable now and concluded that Nigerians of those days are much better.

Speaking during the National Daily Awards in Lagos, Obasanjo said that even though politics was ranging then like the country is experiencing today, they were determined to ensure they chose the right leaders who made the right decisions for the country.

“In fact, in making choices of leaders, I will say Nigerians of post-independence make the right choices of leaders. We all know that if your choice is right, the performance and consequences will be right.”

Obasanjo who is the keynote speaker at the occasion, recalled the opinion of world leaders about Nigeria immediately after independence but regretted that the country is not living up to that expectation. “When the then Prime Minister went to the United Nations post-independence, the world referred to Nigeria as a giant in the sun, not even a giant of Africa.

Nigerians Of My Era Make Right Xhoices Of Leaders, Says Obasanjo

“But the question is, have we lived up to that? If we have not, the question is why? Are there certain qualities that leaders in the post-independence era had that are absent in leadership today? We talk about values, have our values changed? What is Nigeria today, and what is the Nigeria we want? How do we get the Nigeria we want?”

“Over a long period of my life in peacemaking and mediation, I have come to realize that peace, security, and stability are essential ingredients for the development and growth of any country. Without justice, equity, and fairness, no country can attain greatness.

“When you look at us individually, there is something unique about Nigerians. Wherever they go, they excel individually. Today, when you look globally, Nigerians are doing great things individually. It’s time for us to unite and take the country to where it’s supposed to be.

“If we fail to do so, then our existence is useless. We need to make a difference so that we can leave behind a better society.”

Corroborating his views, Chairman of the Occasion and Former Minister of Health and Social Services, Prince Julius Adelusi-Adeluyi said that people generally look up to leaders, so it’s important that leaders demonstrate capacity, character and lead by example.

“As a country, we urgently need a rebirth of a national ethos. What kind of Nigeria do we want? What role should everyone be playing towards the emergence of such a Nigeria? And how can we own that consciousness and drive it regardless of our current circumstances, regardless of whether we are rich or poor, high or low.”

Speaking on the motivation behind the awards, Editor-in-Chief, National Daily Newspaper, Sylvester Ebhodaghe said that despite the challenges and uproar in the country, it will not be out of place to honor patriotic Nigerians who are making a difference.

“At the National Daily Newspaper, we consider it important to encourage the few Nigerians who, in spite of the challenges, make sacrifices to do their best. Not that they want to be recognized, but because they believe that building a just, socially cohesive, equitable, and economically viable society rests on each of us doing our part.

“We believe that the best way to encourage men and women who still believe in this great country and are willing to give everything to make it work is to recognize and encourage them to continue doing the good things they are doing.”

The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babjide Sanwo-Olu, Inspector General of Police, IGP Usman Alkali Baba were among the eminent Nigerians who received awards for outstanding performances.