Nigeria at 60: The rise, the fall, the progress


From Monday Oketa

Nigeria as a soveriegn nation gained her independence from the colonial masters on October 1st, 1960 under the decent commitment and dogged agitation of the likes of Nnamdi Azikiwe, who later held ceremonial office of the President when Alhaji Tafawa Balewa was in control of the National administration and her activities as the Prime Minister of the first Republic between October 1st,1960 to January 15th,1966.

Before we proceed further, let me congratulate the good people of Ebonyi State and the successive governments since the state's creation on October 1st,1996; as the state marks 24 years of uninterrupted democracy, I specaily congratulate His Excellency, distinguished Senator Sam ominyi Egwu, the first civilian Governor of the state, His Excellency, Chief Marthins Elechi, the second civilian Governor of the state and His Excellency, Engr. Chief David Nweze Umahi, the incubent Governor of Ebonyi State and indeed all Ebonyians of GoodWill and conscience across the globe.

The Rise:

Many eyes were on the growing Nigeria with the views that the nation in the next 20, 40 or 60 years from the 1960's independence would become one of the best and most formidable countries not only in African continent but the entire world. This view continued with the successive military governments until 1979 when this hope of 'Nigeria Rise' was activitated and Alhaji Shehu Shagari was democratically elected the first Executive President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria between October 1st 1979 to December 3rd, 1983; when General Mohammadu Buhari led the military coup and overthrew him. At that moment, Buhari took over the mantle of leadership of the country, the beginning of  the "fall" of the great growing nation Nigeria commenced.

The Fall: 

One of the significant histories very sound at heart to recall is that, in 1983 under the military administration of General Mohammadu Buhari, the people of the Ghanaian Republic were evicted under the slogan of "Ghana must go". 

Ghanians went to their country, restructured, revolutionised, restrategized and becomes a fantastic better nation leading Nigeria ahead in many areas and sectors including economy, education, democracy, corrupt free practices and security.

Very instructive to note is that, the same former General Mohammadu Buhari, now a converted democrat (as claimed), is still suprintendenting  over Nigerian nation as a democratically elected President when the Ghanaian authorities and people are subjecting Nigerians to countless humiliations, deprivations, subjugations, demolition of properties and other inhumane activities.

Nigeria as a nation celebrating her 60th anniversary of Independence, is already facing over 600 challenges including agitations along ethnic lines, agitation along religious line, worsening insecurities, economic meltdown, democratic instability, abuses of human rights, electoral malpractices, judicial frauds, and rated one of the most corrupt countries in the world.

The challenges which some of us had suggested should have been addressed with political charisma, uprightness and willingness before the celebration of any kind. Even if the question has not been asked, the answer was already domineering in every public domain - who are those celebrating Nigeria at 60 years? Only the cabals and political class~unanimous voice echoed.

Why is our nation's Independence day celebration left for only cabals and political gladiators? Maybe, you have different opinions but as for me, I suggest it might be because the citizens are yet to feel the impacts of the nation destined with highest mineral resources amongst her contemporaries due to ill governance, maladministration, misrepresentation and self centered leadership method employed by the leaders entrusted with powers and authorities.

The Progress: 

The progress of Nigeria lies in the hands of Nigerians. It is believed that the people have the rights to hold accountable their underperforming leaders. 

Unfortunately, in Nigeria, the reverse is the case as the government seems to hold the masses apprehensively without freedom to express themselves and excercise their foundamental human rights.

In this year's independence celebrations, the low turnout signifies the grudges, and uncomfortablities of the people against the leadership of the nation.

Nigeria at 60 has reached adult stage to redefine her future, to take have taken good care of her children, waiting for the banquet harvest and merriment with the good produce of her hardworking, commitment, dedication to services, to hsve created legacies for her incoming generations, to restore peace and security to her home, and reduce the ambiguous life styles and selfish inclinations of our so called leaders.

Disagreeing with the popular adage, "a fool at forty is a fool forever", Nigeria at 60 cannot remain a Nigeria known for corruption forever. This is a clarion call for a total revolution and for the critical implementation of the National ethical values - these values if practically observed and used will go at length in enhancing the future of dear nation, vice versa.

Happy Independence day to Nigerians.

Monday Oketa is a social commentator and political analyst, stands for a greater Nation!

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