Nigeria’s problems surmountable, says Fayemi at Zik’s lecture
Commends ex-President’s position on nation’s indivisibility
Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has said that various political, economic and social problems bedeviling Nigeria could be solved if leaders and followers share a unity of purpose in addressing the challenges.
Fayemi, who spoke as the guest lecturer at the combined ninth and 10th anniversary of Zik Lecture Series held at the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, Anambra State, yesterday, said that a well-structured dialogue remains a major pathway to peace and progress.
He admonished Nigerians to bury their differences to achieve a greater and fulfilled country.He said there was nothing heroic in dying for a cause that dialogue and negotiations could help resolve.
In his lecture titled, “Nation-Building: Between Restructuring and Autonomy,” Fayemi, who is also the Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), stressed that Nigerians must learn to manage their differences to achieve the goal of a better and more perfect union.
Fayemi, therefore, called for the need to develop a democratic system in Nigeria that meets the expectations of Nigerians and restore people’s trust in the government they voted into office.
“In his time, Nnamdi Azikiwe scored many firsts that can only be recalled with awe and admiration. He was among the pioneering university-educated Africans who sojourned to the United States in quest for knowledge and self-improvement. He was also a pioneering sportsman, public intellectual, journalist, newspaper proprietor – with 12 daily titles in his stable at one point in time-, owner of a pan-Nigeria athletic club, and author.
“The indestructibility of Nigeria, as envisaged by Zik, is indeed best assured when the majority of Nigerians are emotionally connected to Nigeria because of what the country is able to do for them and in the quality of life it provides for its citizens,” he said.
The Ekiti State governor stressed the need to strengthen those pillars that unite Nigerians together rather than fanning the embers of disunity and disintegration, which he said, negated the ideals of nationalists like Azikiwe.
He added: “I am convinced that the problems that we are called upon to address and redress in building a better country are not beyond our grasp to tackle. With good faith and a generous dose of goodwill, we can, as we have done in various occasions in our history.”
“We must strive to do so in the spirit of the kinds of noble values and principles that inflamed the spirit of a youthful Azikiwe to enroll at Lincoln University in a quest to discover the innate goodness in the human species with a view to building a better and freer world. We must never abandon the spirit of inquiry and discovery that led Azikiwe to join other nationalists to seek to create a nation-state founded on the best ideals of a citizenship anchored on freedom and justice.”
Fayemi enjoined Nigerians to learn from South Sudan, which declared independence from Sudan in 2011 only for a fresh civil war to break out within the new nation two years after achieving self-determination, which led to the death of about 400,000 people with over four million people displaced.