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‘Nigeria Is Economically Nowhere; Has Never Been This Divided, Not Even During The Civil War’ – Obasanjo

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo says Nigeria is economically nowhere and has never been this divided, not even during the civil war.

Obasanjo said this at a colloquium organised by the Kings College Old Boys Association to mark the 113th anniversary of the school in Lagos, noting that the country has lost its place on the international table.

According to him, Nigeria needs to have national dream and identity which would unity citizens and provide sense of pride and investment in the nation for all. 

The former president therefore called on Nigerians to elect responsible leaders who have no arrogant and nepotistic tendencies in order to reposition the country and unify its people.  

He said, “Today, we are politically disunited. We have never been this disunited, not even during the civil war. Economically, we are nowhere and diplomatically, what they say to me wherever I go is that Nigeria is not at the table. 

“We need to have a government that understands what it means to govern and the responsibility to govern; not arrogance of ignorance, not crying nepotism. If we have the right government that understands Nigeria and Africa, if we do what is right, investment will come. We must have the right instrument to get the right solution to our problems. We have to be where Nigeria must be. Nigeria has no business with poverty, insecurity and even political division,” Obasanjo said. 

He added that economic emancipation and citizens’ wellbeing are central to the national dream. 

Obasanjo stressed that the Nigerian dream must start from the national identity, which all Nigerians can hold on to.

In his view, national identity is the foundation of social cohesion, adding that weak social cohesion causes distrust as people are reluctant to engage with one another. 

 “We do not trust ourselves while confidence is totally destroyed and where there is no confidence, there is no togetherness. If we have no dream, then, what can be the inspiration for the aspiration of our youths? What can they look up to or aspire to? We must take being a Nigerian as first and being anything else as second. If we have a Nigerian dream, there will be a vision for our youth. 

“The Americans can say they have the American dream, the British can say they have the British dream but in our case, do we really have what we can call the Nigerian dream? For me, the Nigerian dream will start from the national identity, which we can all hold on to. National identity is the foundation of social position. Even when you look into our constitution, there is something we call national ethics. 

“There are three races in the world, the white, the yellow and the black. For now, the Americans are leading the white race. The Chinese have taken the lead of the yellow race. I believe Nigeria with a population of 225million people is created by God to lead the black race. So whatever we do, we disappoint ourselves, we disappoint Africa and disappoint the black race. We must stop disappointing ourselves and when we stop disappointing ourselves, we will take care of the continent and the black race,” he said. 

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