Fayemi, Afe Babalola make case for united Nigeria
Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi and founder of Afe Babalola University Ado Ekiti (ABUAD), Aare Afe Babalola have called for greater commitment from citizens in sustaining peace and the country’s unity.
The duo made the submission in Ado Ekiti, Friday, at a dinner organised in honour of members of Alumni Association of the 3rd Regular Course of the Nigeria Defence Academy (NDA), led by former Senate President, David Mark.
The alumni members, including former military Governors Tunde Ogbeha and Col Raji Rasaki were in the state for the association’s Annual General Meeting.
After their induction as honorary members of the Alumni Association, both Fayemi and Afe Babalola agreed in their speeches on the need for a new Constitution that would strengthen unity, guarantee fairness and true federalism.
Fayemi said the country’s unity at this critical moment was worth standing for, as he believes in the possibility of a new and better Nigeria, “if all would be committed to confronting the challenges bedevilling the country.”
“When you see the contributions made by the officers of this set, you will know that despite the challenges, the hills we have traversed right from amalgamation, to independence, to civil war and now to democratisation, you see possibility in a new Nigeria, a better Nigeria, a Nigeria that is responsive and responsible, and is dedicated to serving the people.
“All we need to do is commit ourselves to it as a journey and not as a destination.”
And on that journey, we are going to confront difficulties, but there also going to be hope in those challenges and we are going to come out triumphantly…” he said.
He urged the association’s members and leaders to be committed to building a Nigeria spoken of in the second stanza of the national anthem – where peace and justice shall reign.
“What you see in ABUAD is a demonstration and reflection of the possibilities of a new Nigeria, not through secessionist agitation, but through commitment that this country would be restructured, would be accountable and would serve its people in the best manner,” he said.
On his part, Afe Babalola said one of the greatest challenges confronting the country was lack of discipline, as indiscipline is at the root of all socio-political and economic challenges confronting the country.
“This country is on a precipice, everybody knows that. We must ensure that we keep this country as one. Let us have a new Constitution similar to the one between 60 and 66, less modification and of course true federalism.”
Chairman of the Association, David Mark, commended Fayemi for demonstrating strong commitment to governance through infrastructural development and implementation of policies and programmes for citizens.
Mark, who disclosed that members had been in the state for three days, said their visit to some state government projects, such as the Ikun Diary Farm confirmed the governor’s patriotism and dedication to a better Ekiti.
He said the dairy farm with capacity for 10, 000 litres of milk daily production was an excellent example of the possibility of rearing cattle in a manner that herders and farmers’ clashes can be avoided, “and a great way to use agriculture to drive industrialisation.
He also commended Afe Babalola for his developmental stride, conception and setting up of a world-class university, with huge investment in agriculture and medicine.