There’s still hope for Nigeria at 62 – Uzodimma


Governor Hope Uzodimma of Imo State said Nigeria still has hope despite the country’s basket-full challenges at 62.


Uzodimma spoke on Sunday at the Maria Assumpta Catholic Cathedral Owerri during a church service to mark the 62nd independence anniversary of Nigeria.


He challenged Nigerians to stand up to tackle the challenges retarding the progress of the nation.


He advised Nigerians to learn to differentiate the meaning of collective interest as against individual or personal interest, noting that “what defines a Nation is collective interest.”


Governor Uzodimma explained that all nations have their peculiar challenges, “but we must take time to study how countries overcame such challenges and deplore proactive approaches in confronting the challenges of our time.


“Every generation has a responsibility to confront every challenge that befell them, be it leadership or followership but the common denominator to solve a problem is by identifying the root cause of the problem.”


The Governor regretted that the attitude of Nigerians has always been to “complain and lament about problems, identifying where things are not going well, but not doing much in planning how things can go well.”


The Governor acknowledged that at 62, Nigeria has come of age and continued to struggle for survival – failures and successes – but said, “despite all the challenges that confronted the country, Nigeria and Nigerians still have life and faith in God to continue to drive the nation.”


He assuaged the congregation’s fears that Nigeria is not making progress saying, “in spite of the challenges of leadership, insecurity, poverty and unemployment the country still remains very hopeful and God has been very merciful to all of us.”


While acknowledging that the current and past leaders of Nigeria must have made their mistakes with regard to the mega problems, he, however, said that the strength and energy are still available to them, particularly as the blessings which God has endowed Nigeria with – natural and human resources – provide hope for tomorrow.


“How many of us are interested in how Nigeria can be better, and if yes what have we done in that direction?”


Drawing an inference from Imo State with her peculiar problems, the Governor said: “Leadership came, leadership left but problems are here and there. We should brace-up and confront the challenges of our time.”


In his homily, Archbishop Ugorji thanked God for the numerous blessings He endowed Nigeria with as a nation “as well as so many talents and human endowments given to her leaders,” indicating that there is still hope for the country.


Ugorji recalled the expectations of Nigerians 62 years ago and said they desired a nation devoid of rancour, ritual killings, insecurity, poverty, and all forms of immoralities. Also, he said that Nigerians deserve a nation where everybody will be respected, given equal opportunity, justice, and fair play, and experience a life of freedom.


He added that the citizens are desirous of benefiting from God-given natural resources, in a state of peace and obedience to the rule of law.


The Archbishop acknowledged that the Independence Anniversary Mass was not just to mark the 62nd Independence of Nigeria but an event intended to remember our forefathers, brothers, and sisters who paid the supreme price to make us a nation. “We look forward to celebrating a peaceful country, where peace and unity will dominate the entire nation and the citizens will be happy for it.”

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