NOTHING TO CHEER ABOUT NIGERIA'S 50TH ANNIVERSARYâ€“OBASANJO'S EX-AIDE
A former adviser to ex-president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Prof. Julius Ihonvbere, has said that the country has very little to show for its 50 years of self-rule and independence.
The former special adviser to the President on Project Monitoring, in a lecture delivered on Monday in Benin, Edo State, during the Nigerian Union of Journalists, Edo State chapter's Press Week, said the country's pains resulted from bad leadership.
He said, 'The truth is that I often feel sad when politicians, so-called leaders and bureaucrats try to confuse, mislead, mis-educate us with half truths, concoctions and fabrications about our progress as a people and nation…in several respects, Nigeria is more of an undeveloped rather than an underdeveloped society.'
He said that while other countries, including some in Africa were overcoming underdevelopment through the building of new structures and institutions, consolidating democracy and meeting the basic human needs of their people, Nigeria's leaders were busy deceiving the people with half-truths and showmanship.
Ihonvbere said that Nigeria's upper and middle class ruined the country.
He lamented that Nigerians, rather than face the realities on ground, turned to God for divine intervention.
He said, 'We bother God with everything. God is our excuse for laziness and failure to organise our people for a struggle.
'The country and the states can only make progress through discipline, focus, sensitive, compassionate and visionary leadership, planning, investment, savings, productivity, stability and good governance.
'We just have to abandon political rascality, posturing, noise-making, populism and diversionary tactics for focused and strategy-based planning and for the leadership to move forward.'
Ihonvbere said governments over the years had ruined everything that would have made life better for Nigerians with non-commitment to developmental plans, adding that no nation made it with a 'left, right, right, left, centre, back, forward, roundabout, sit, stand, run and stop policy almost at the same time.'