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Inspire true change in Nigeria, NCFront challenges Nigerians abroad

By John Akubo, Abuja
23 December 2021   |   2:42 am
Chairman of the NCFront and leader of the shadow cabinet of a coalition of political parties and civil society organisations (CSOs), Prof. Pat Utomi, has urged Nigerians living abroad

Pat Utomi. Photo: THEINTERVIEW

Chairman of the NCFront and leader of the shadow cabinet of a coalition of political parties and civil society organisations (CSOs), Prof. Pat Utomi, has urged Nigerians living abroad to see it as their duty to ensure a new leadership and progress in Nigeria.

He stressed that the most populous black nation needs a leadership that “will remove the shame of Nigeria’s current failing status brought about by pervasive poverty, insecurity, state capture, atrocious healthcare, declining education and corruption.”

The position was contained in a statement issued yesterday by the group’s Head of Public Affairs Bureau, Dr. Tanko Yunusa.

He quoted Utomi to have thrown the challenge at a Christmas dinner hosted for him and his wife, Prof. Ifeoma Utomi, in Chicago, by a group of Nigerian professionals in the United States. The don recalled that he could not wait to jump on the plane to go home and change the world when he finished his PhD “down the road from here in Bloomington, Indiana, as Chicago battled the Tylenol poisoning scare of 1982.”

He said Nigerians in Diaspora ought to consciously engage for change in Nigeria as their Indian colleagues did in the electoral putsch that broke up the old-styled Indian politics and brought Prime Minister Nehindra Modi to power.

Utomi said Nigerians must demand accountability from politicians, “who have severely damaged their country since 1999, making it the poverty capital of the world, and situating it at the bottom of almost all Millennium Development Goal (MDG) and Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) indicators.”

The political economist urged that “we must face the future and not allow the wrongs of yesterday distract us. We cannot, but work to ensure that all who made yesterday a horror story, are allowed to pollute the future.”

Utomi said while he understood why many intellectuals are calling for a ban on all who have held elective positions since 1999 from participating in the 2023 elections, he stated that he would prefer that the people on street protests and in polling booths ‘outlaw’ the politics of self-love and nauseating narcissism, which “has characterised our politics since 1999 and held back the hands of the clock.”

He said that any politician, who could not explain any significant asset traceable to him, in the way Afenifere leader, Chief Ayo Adebanjo had done, should stay away from politics or risk street uprisings as an instrument of consequence management.

“They may think they have looted the treasury enough and abused security votes enough to have a war chest to buy the streets, but they will soon see what is coming to them, Utomi promised his audience.

He explained that the introduction of a shadow government team was a practical venting of the ideals of democracy, stating that the priority of the alternative government platform was poverty eradication through making Nigeria the world’s next great factory.

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