Listen to article
Former president of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, has called on Nigerians not lose hope in the country despite the ugly situation of things, but use the opportunity presented by the current political cycle to take decisions that would not only help renew hope but also restore what had been lost and rebuild the country.
The former President made this known in his keynote speech at the memorial lecture which was held in honour of late Edo businessman and philanthropist, Captain Hosa Wells Okunbo in Abuja on Saturday.
Jonathan pointed out that ahead of the 2023 elections, it is important that Nigerians should prepare themselves to be wooed at campaign grounds by various politicians seeking different elective offices, however, their thoughts should be beyond 2023, and about Nigeria and the kind of leadership it deserves now and in future to ensure that the country assumes its rightful place among the comity of nations.
He went on to appeal to Nigerians to be circumspect in the exercise of their voting rights, shift from the ‘politics of bread and butter’ and ensure that they do not elect leaders that would buy their conscience today and mortgage the future of their children and grandchildren.
‘We should endeavour to elect only those that will leave legacies of unity, peace and development. For a nation to grow, leaders at various points must deliberately make the necessary sacrifices that promote patriotism, inspire devotion and spur citizens to do their best for the country.
‘Our political leaders should worry about the depth of their footprints and the kind of legacies they are leaving behind. And I do not mean this to apply to only leaders at the national level. Those who also lead at various capacities in politics and business, be they councilors, council chairpersons, governors, lawmakers at both state and national levels as well as boardroom gurus should be bothered about the value of their leadership style,’ he said.
Jonathan pointed out that the whole essence of leadership should naturally drive initiatives that seek to build sustainable societies and make the lives of the people better and more meaningful, and every political leader should, in a moment of introspection, spare a thought for the legacy he or she would leave behind.
He described Captain Hosa Okunbo as an entrepreneur who carved a niche for himself by investing in people and in those businesses that make significant impact on the Nigerian economy and lives of the people, saying one thing that endeared him to people was his warmth, openness and generosity.