Daniel, Obi, Makarfi, others canvass transformational leadership
Express hope on Nigeria’s future
Former Governors of Ogun, Anambra and Kaduna states, Gbenga Daniel, Peter Obi and Ahmed Makarfi respectively, were among notable personalities that expressed concern over the present quality of leaders in the country, insisting that the nation urgently needs transformational leaders.
The former governors, who spoke at the fourth yearly lecture of “Freedom Online” in Lagos yesterday, said with the nation’s enormous resources, Nigeria could still perform better, if the quality of leadership is addressed.
In his keynote address, entitled: “Nigeria’s Political Indices: Bright or Bleak Future,” Daniel urged Nigerians to vote for good leaders, rather than queue behind leaders who mortgage their lives by giving them money and food as incentive in exchange for votes.
The former Ogun State governor said Nigerians should realise that the only way to see a developed Nigeria is to ensure that they vote with their brains and not their stomach.
Makarfi, who was the chairman of the event, said he was optimistic about a brighter Nigeria, but added that the leaders Nigeria need now must be those that would provide a government of national unity.
Obi, who was the special guest speaker, observed that the recruitment and selection process of leaders are poor.
He said: “We have everything but lack the right leadership. In choosing the right leaders, we must look at character, competence and capacity. Leaders must also invest in education, health and pull people out of poverty.”
SIMILARLY, former Military Administrator of Ondo State, Chief Olabode George, said Nigerians must be seen to be selfless in service and to the rule of law.
George, who was represented by erstwhile member of the The Guardian Editorial Board, Utman Sodipe, said no matter the situation, he would not give up on Nigeria, saying: “This nation will not, should not and must not fail.”
The Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams, called for restructuring.
He said the issue of restructuring is very important to us.
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who was represented by the state’s Commissioner for information and Strategy Gbenga Omotoso, stated that though there are challenges, there are still good narratives about the country.
He said: “Nigeria is not retrogressing. We are making progress. The youths are doing wonderful things all over the world. For instance, in Lagos, youths are deploying technologies to solve societal problems. The future of Nigeria is very bright and everything is in the hands of all of us—the old and the youths.”
For the former Director-General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside, its time to stop dwelling so much on the past and focus on the future as tomorrow may be too late.
According to him, quality of leadership impacts on all citizens and aligns with the need to rethink recruitment process for the leaders of this country.
MEANWHILE, the host and Editor-in-Chief of Freedom Online, Mr. Gabriel Gabriel Akinadewo, said that the time to decide on the bright side or bleak future for Nigeria is now as the world is moving and not waiting for Nigeria.