Nigeria’s Emancipation through
Cultural, Civil and Peaceful Revolution (CCPR)
- After the first generation of patriotic Nigerians who brought about the independence, (Dr Nnamdi Azikiwe; Sir Ahmadu Bello, Sarduana of Sokoto; Sir Tafawa Balewa; and Chief Obafemi Awolowo [SAN]), Nigeria’s search for emancipation in all areas of civil society i.e. governance, democracy, economic development, security, law and order, scientific development, and leadership has eluded the country.
- Despite their failings, it’s worth acknowledging that the past military and civilian administrations had good intensions for Nigeria while in office. They gave their best,and there are indeed some landmark contributions for which this country should be grateful.
- Although the search to advance Nigeria has gone through the military and civilians alike, exemplary leadership qualities have yet to be displayed in either category to date (SanusiLamido, Governor of Nigerian Central Bank). Nigeria needs a divinely guided charismatic leadership to guide and steer her to the leading democratic and economic super-power in the African League of Nations.
Studies show, the leaders that have emerged from the two search categories (military and civilians) have mainly sought to occupy positions for the mere sake of regional supremacy (Nugent Paul – Africa since independence: a comparative history). Thus far, we have not found the levels of patriotism, dazzling charisma, devotion, sacrifice, vision, outstanding organisational and analytical skills, superb emotional intelligence and spiritually guided leadership that embodied the first generation of leaders who guided Nigeria through gaining independence in 1960. As one of the most revered leaders of our time, a role model to presidents and the darling of the common man, there is much to learn today about the leadership from President Mandela, a living legend. The origin of his influence and success is accredited to:
- the power of his personality,
- the elegance of his humanity,
- the loftiness of his ideals,
- the wisdom of his judgment,
- the calmness of his temperament and
- the power of his commitment to the wellbeing of others (US Ambassador Joseph).
Therefore President Mandela, a world citizen with unadulterated African genes, has demonstrated that Africa is endowed with African born leaders. What is lacking is the mechanism to identify, encourage and empower such talents to take their rightful place democratically and lead African nations to greatness.
- And so after years of military rulers and civilian administrations, the nation seems to be sliding backward rather than forward. The country’s history has been marked by economic stagnation, declining welfare, and social instability. Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Brazil, among others, with which Nigeria was at par in developmental terms a few decades ago, have either attained the status of developed nations or have long been recognised as truly emerging economies of the world. In contrast, Nigeria(the largest black nation on earth), remains a typical Third World nation: buffeted by mass hunger, poverty, crime, corruption, environmental degradation, massive unemployment, disease, primitive state of basic infrastructure, etc. Nigeria, a country with vast amount of arable land is regrettably unable to feed itself and has been involved in importation of food for the past 40 years(Chairman, House Committee on Agriculture, Gbenga Makanjuola).
- Corruption “has penetrated and eroded hitherto sacred aspects of Nigerian society, such as the judiciary, universities and faith-based organisations. The situation has contributed substantially to the present situation in the country of under-development and poverty; the gross violation of rights; the dearth of human dignity; the absence of the full realisation of national and individual potential; and the negation of social justice” (Transparency International, 2004). The impact can be felt in terms of the poor international image of Nigeria, resulting in humiliating entry visa requirements at foreign embassies, distrust of every Nigerian no matter the status professionally or in society, downgrading of Nigerian qualifications and, mistrust of official documents issued by Nigerian authorities etc.
- Nigeria looked upon herself beyond 50 and could not see light at the end of the tunnel. Children in primary schools wonder at the inability of their fathers to build structures they can call home in their villages. The simple reason is the salaries of their fathers, despite amount in figures, have lost purchasing power due to inflation and other economic circumstances. The cost of food has risen. Nigeria has become a nation where a child no longer aspires to be like the father. THIS IS BECAUSE IN THE EYES OF MANY NIGERIAN CHILDREN, MOST FATHERS HAVE FAILED. Why? – because the father, the head and bread winner of the family, struggles to make even two square meals a regular and guaranteed right of the child; house rents that keep a roof over the family are late due to the insufficiency of and delay in wage payments; children’s school fees remain unpaid and children often go hungry to school. The infrastructure of Nigerian schools tells the same story the attending children tell.
- If a child comes to school with empty stomach, concentration becomes an issue. Where teachers have not been paid for months, the dedication that is expected of them is called into question. In offices up and down the country the story is the same.The menace of corruption is all too obvious: slow movement of files in offices, police extortion at tollgates and slow traffics on the highways, port congestions, queues at passport offices and gas stations, ghost workers syndrome, election irregularities etc.