SOUTH MILWAUKEE WI. (GVE) – Nigeria may not come out of her present struggles and quagmire of troubles if she does not enthrone progressive leadership in the country.
These were the words of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Nigeria’s former president who argued that Nigeria has disappointed Africa in providing needed leadership in post-military era.
Obasanjo who spoke on Monday, 5 February at the 15th Lecture and International Leadership Symposium with the theme: Leadership and Performance in Africa: The Challenge of the Continent’s Economic Competitiveness, organised by Centre for Value Leadership (CVL) in Muson Center, Onikan, Lagos, insisted that the masses should form a non-partisan “popular movement” that would serve as credible alternative to the current national leadership.
“The first generation of leaders in this country, whatever you say about them, gave us independence. They helped in the transition from colonial power to indigenous leadership. Within their knowledge, their experience and exposure, these first generation leaders did their best. But then, they made mistake, which led to the transition to the military era. Later, there was another transition to democracy.
“The nation has also witnessed transition from one civilian regime to another within a political party and from one political party to another. But, there is another important transition which the country requires right now; this is the transition to popular movement to give people credible alternatives. Until we are able to achieve this, we are not going anywhere.
“I believe we need both strong institutions and strong leaders. If there are no strong leaders, we will not be able to build strong institutions. If strong institutions are established and our leaders are weak, those strong institutions will collapse.
“It is the height of stupidity if you think of yourself alone and you do think not other. In Africa, if Nigeria thinks of itself alone and does not think of the rest of Africa, it would be foolish,” the former Nigerian president stated.