Nigeria @ 54: I am optimistic and bullish on Nigeria


By Emeka Chiakwelu
Cynicism is the product of intellectual lethargy, especially when history
and situational ethics have inveterate the prevailing supposition. As
Nigeria celebrate her 54 birthday, the conventional dictum is to be
cynical and pessimistic because of the numerous obstacles and challenges
confronting Nigeria.

“It is better”, as Chinese says, “to light a candle than curse the
darkness”. But in reality and evaluation of the progress of the country,
I can say for sure that Nigeria is gradually but steadily emerging from
the darkness of yesterdays. Let us reason together, hear me out before
you start calling names and gravitating to the conventional sarcasm.

The leadership of President Jonathan may not be 100% perfect, but if
Nigerians can be frank with each other the country for the first time in
the recent memory is lighting a candle of progress. I am by no means
implying that Nigeria has succeeded. Things are not yet perfect, but
even Stevie Wonder can attest that Nigeria is in right direction. Yes,
Nigeria still has a lot of works to be done.

For the first time, Nigeria is in upward swing and Nigeria has formulated
an industrial policy that will ultimately lunch the country into a modern
industrial society. The Nigerian economy is progressively becoming
diversified. The oil and Gas sector of the economy is no more eclipsing
agricultural sector as it used to do in the past. Nigeria has experienced
massive direct investments that were streaming into the economy from
around the world.

But lack of infrastructures especially shortage of electric power supply
and inadequacy in protection of life and property can derail economic
development and deter the successful implementation of the industrial

There is a stabilized macroeconomics and well regulated monetary policy.
Thanks to Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Minister of Finance and the rest of the
economic and financial team; the days of lackluster and scrawny management
of the economy is dead and gone.
Nigeria still has myriads pressing problems especially the issue of Boko
Haram and its destructive force. Boko Haram has spelled a difficult and
problematic matter to be contained and annihilated. But all hope are not
lost, the presidency has recently renewed a sense of urgency and purpose
in confronting the towering problem. Nigerians must rally together to win
the war against terrorism as she did to Ebola disease.

The war against Ebola was comprehensive, decisive and sustainable, that
can be extended to terrorism and Boko Haram:
The methodology and approach the government utilized and applied to tackle
the pernicious and precarious Ebola was quite encouraging. The three
tier-governments mobilized the entire country with credible plan to wage a
deliberate war and defeat Ebola. I wish the government can apply a
similar tactics in confronting Boko Haram, social ills and unemployment.

Let’s delve into the massive unemployment: It is making life unbearable
for country’s workforce especially the country’s youths. Many of the
college graduates and able body citizens are without jobs. This is a
dangerous trend, if it is allow to percolate endlessly and be rooted in
the society, the detrimental effect will summon an incredible doom to the
society. The Scio-cultural welfare and the stability of the society will
be threatened when millions of young and active youths are without jobs
and lack source of livelihood. This is a timing bomb that must be attended
immediately with strategic and efficient planning and implementation.

Image result for president jonathaImage result for obianoImage result for
aliyu babangidaImage result for fashola
Well, it is not chic to say anything good about Nigerian leaders, but a
bulging pregnancy cannot be covered forever. Few Nigerian leaders are
trying, rising to the occasion and sustaining social contract. President
Jonathan is giving a new affirmative and progressive face to the
presidency; Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State is rising to the
status of a statesman, and Governor Fashola is always energetic and
creative. And we cannot forget the able Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra
State whom has contributed immensely in tackling kidnapping and
criminality in the state. Governor Obiano is working zealously to restore
the environmental integrity of Anambra landscape.

All things being equal, Nigerians cannot afford to write off their country
because there is only one Nigeria and our children have no other place to
call home. Running to abroad and siphoning the country’s resources abroad
are signs of immaturity, ignorance and self-hate. Let every Nigerian work
together for a brighter future for our children and posterity. Happy
birthday Nigeria!!!

Emeka Chiakwelu, Principal Policy Strategist at AFRIPOL. His works have
appeared in Wall Street Journal, Huffington Post, Forbes and many other
important journals around the world. His writings have also been cited in
many economic books, publications and many institutions of higher learning
including tagteam Harvard Education. Africa Political & Economic Strategic
Center (AFRIPOL) is foremost a public policy center whose fundamental
objective is to broaden the parameters of public policy debates in Africa.
To advocate, promote and encourage free enterprise, democracy, sustainable
green environment, human rights, conflict resolutions, transparency and
probity in,

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