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Say no to locust leaders, Ezekwesili urges voters

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Dr Oby Ezekwesili


Ahead of 2019 general elections, former Minister of Education, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, has urged voters across the country to be wise in selecting their leaders and resist every attempt to bring back what she termed “status quo and locust leaders.”

Status quo leaders, according to her, are archaic leaders who do not have the knowledge, training and expertise to advance the society and influence public good, while locust leaders are those that steal public funds.Ezekwsili, who spoke with The Guardian at the 2018 graduation ceremony of Greensprings School, Lekki, Lagos, blamed the nation’s woes on bad leadership. She charged Nigerians to watch out for those self-centred and ignorant leaders who are unable to redirect the moral compass of the nation.

“Enough of them. We don’t need them any more. We must say no to status quo leaders. They are leaders who are so obsessed about themselves that they have no time for what the rest of the society need. We need leaders who are inclusive, who are able to manage our diversity efficiently. We need selfless leaders who do not care about what benefits them but rather what benefits the rest of the society. We need leaders who have character, competence and capacity.

“Leaders with character are incorruptible, leaders with competence are 21st century leaders; they know everything that the world of technology is saying to nations and people. Leaders of capacity will not be daunted by the problems that they have to face, so we need value-based leaders. They are the group that can solve modern world problems.

“We don’t need archaic leaders, who should be retiring to the museum. We don’t need leaders who easily get tired, because complex problems are for leaders to solve.”The former minister admonished citizens to vote in leaders who live their values and not those who speak it.

“Nigerians should vote for people that will remove us from this normalised sense that vices are rewarding. We must know that values are the only things that build societies that are dynamic and progressive. If we continue to elect leaders with vices, we will remain in crisis. If we continue to elect selfish leaders, those accumulating wealth they did not earn, they are locust leaders, enough with locust leaders. Nigerians say no to them,” she cautioned.Ezekwesili urged all voters to make 2019 polls remarkable by changing the country’s leadership narratives.

“Indeed Nigeria needs a new direction, because a society that normalises aberrant behaviours as her code of conduct will be a society in crisis. A society has a way of loosing its moral compass, when it looses it, then leaders must arise and mobilise everybody toward a new direction. We don’t want people who are comfortable with ignorance. We want those with the hunger to know how to do and fix societal problems.”


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Oby Ezekwesili
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