No force in the world can defeat a UNITED NIGERIA. World Champion, Commonwealth Champions, African Champions. UNITED we prosper, DIVIDeD we stumble and crash.
Despite knowing the damning consequences of disunity, many Nigerians have chosen to amplify our fault lines. People are only Nigerians in name but ethnic bigots in character. People gladly stoke the embers of strife and division and put Nigeria to the knife at every opportunity. We gloat over our flaws with relish and discountenance our positives.
Even as we have been driven to the wall by irresponsible leadership, extreme pessimism can’t breed progress and hope. We must strive to become genuine patriots. We must remember the admonition of Jerry Gana. A nation can only be great when all, or majority of its citizens also play their parts well.
As we deservedly attack those in authorities for their uninspiring performances, let us pause and ask how we have fared individually as patriots. Do we obey the laws? Do we pay our taxes? Do we perform our civic responsibilities with enthusiasm? Do we go above and beyond for Nigeria? Just look at the determination on the faces of the gold-winning 4 by 400m Nigerian women’s team at the just concluded Commonwealth Games in Birmingham to make their country proud. Do we also exert ourselves vigorously to make Nigeria proud? We need to act more and ask more what we can do to contribute to a greater Nigeria.
A greater nation begins with each and everyone of us. It is not the sole responsibility of leaders.
Beyond being a critic, what can each of us do at our individual levels to make Nigeria great? How can we be bridge builders and solution providers in our little corners? If we all do this, it will just be a matter of time before the greatness of our country begins to blossom.
For now, let’s relish this victory. Congrats Team Nigeria.”
Olabode Opeseitan, is a business leader and public affairs, analyst.