POWER ROTATION BETWEEN THE UPLAND AND RIVERS IJAW ‘II ENSURE JUSTICE, PEACE AND HARMONY – HRH Alabo Prof. Dagogo M. J. Fubara, JP

Introduction His Royal Highness, Alabo Professor Dagogo M.J. Fubara, the Dappaye Amakiri XVII of Opobo Kingdom, occupies the traditional stool esta

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Introduction

His Royal Highness, Alabo Professor Dagogo M.J. Fubara, the Dappaye Amakiri XVII of Opobo Kingdom, occupies the traditional stool established in 1580 by King Opu Dappa and is a direct descendant of King Asimin the 1st King of Grand Bonny. A Professor Emeritus of Geodesy, who is the 1st of African descent both to earn a Ph.D in Geodesy and become Professor of Geodesy. He was among the nine persons honoured as Distinguished Academics during the Nigeria Centenary Celebrations of 2014. He was previously honoured by NASA in USA as Distinguished Scientist and Role Model in Space Geodesy. His other notable honours awards include SHELL Distinguished Scholar and NUC Distinguished Professor.

HRH Alabo Prof. Dagogo M. J. Fubara

 

He is an elder statesman and a committed ljaw leader who has passionately served Rivers State and Nigeria. Soft spoken but firm, Alabo Dagogo Fubara in this interview with Sotonye ljuye-Dagogo shares his thoughts on some salient societal issues. He says that Rivers State would fare much better if we abandoned our wicked ways and ask God to heal our land. Excerpts:

 Question: Prof, how was life growing up as a young man in this part of the country before Rivers State was created?

Answer: Before Rivers State was created, you will not believe it, although we have a lot more money now because of oil and gas, but before Rivers State was created life was more secure. I came to Port Harcourt for the first time in 1948 and there was potable water in Port Harcourt, the taps were running and we fetched water from public taps.  Today, there is no such thing as public water taps and we all have to depend on private boreholes for water, just as we provide our own electricity most of the time and our personal security by erecting high walls and fencing out ourselves as if we are in prison environment.

But when I came to Port Harcourt in 1948, there was stable electricity and as a village boy, I was shocked when my little niece touched a switch button on the wall and the light came on. Until then, the only electricity that I knew were the electric lights in ships that came to Opobo, Abonnema and Bonny, the towns where I attend primary schools. I lived in 84 Bonny Street as a Pitakwa boy.

After my primary school education, I went to Government College, Umuahia, which was one of the four secondary schools established by the Colonial Administration. The others were: Kings College, Lagos; Government College, Ibadan and Barewa College, Zaria. It was a thing of joy and pleasure to be able to get admission into those schools. It was by merit and not by ‘man-know-man’.

It was at Government College Umuahia, that I first noticed the extent of advancement of our Rivers people in the field of education. All the tutors in the college were white expatriates except four persons who were not only black but were indigenes of the area that later became known as Rivers State. They were Late Chief Dr. L. D. Erekosima from Buguma, Mr. A. E. Alagoa from Nembe, Mr. R.F. Jumbo from Bonny and Mr. Hart also from Bonny.

In addition, most of the Principals and Headmasters of almost all the Secondary and Primary Schools in the then Eastern Region of Nigeria came from this same area. That was the kind of educational advantage we had prior to the creation of Rivers State. There was no oil but things worked and people were contented with the standard of life they lived and the security of lives and property.

 

Question: Rivers State celebrated 50 years of its existence and half a century is such a long period in human life. Majority of today’s active population was either unborn or too young when the state was created in 1967. As an elder statesman, can you recount the events that led to the creation of Rivers State?

Answer: You are right that may be, about more than 60% of our population and indeed the current political leaders, whether they are in the House of Assembly or they are in the State Government or LGA Administration, were born after the creation of Rivers State. Most of them are less than 50 years and are not quite aware of the things we are talking about. Unlike the founding fathers of Rivers State who were focused on the common good of society and the desire to bequeath lasting legacies, subsequent leaders have been preoccupied by the greed to make money and acquire wealth, even if illegally.

Take the late Chief Dr. Harold Dappa Biriye for instance, who in 1957-58 represented the ljaw nation and indeed the entire Rivers Province at the pre-independence National Constitutional Conference, it was by his vision and commitment to our wellbeing at the conference, that got the Colonial Government to set up the Minority Rights Commission to inquire into and allay the fears of minorities, which is popularly known as the Willink’s Commission of Inquiry which made far reaching recommendations about how to develop the Niger Delta and its inhabitants. Unfortunately, the people in-charge of the three Regions of Nigeria at that time and the succeeding governance leadership at the Federal level refused to implement the recommendations of the Willink’s Commission Report. This is the reason the Niger Delta and indeed Rivers State have not received the deserved developmental attention.

Chief Harold Dappa Biriye

In any case, we have a state called Rivers State because a Rivers man, Chief Harold Dappa Biriye by his advice to the then Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, told him that the answer to the lingering question on unity and the continued existence of Nigeria depended on the creation of states. General Gowon told me that he asked Biriye to go around the country and if he got people to agree with the idea, then states would be created and that Biriye did travel round Nigeria by road, not by air, and made Gowon to create states including Rivers State.

It is on record that Biriye and others insisted on the creation of Rivers State while some prominent Rivers politicians of the then Action Group Party clamoured for what they called Calabar, Ogoja, Rivers (COR) State which was not of interest to us. And so eventually, Biriye and other leaders clamoured and got the Rivers State of our dream.

Question: Would you say that after 50 years, Rivers State has actually lived up to the dreams of the founding fathers? If not, what went wrong?

Answer: We have made a lot of giant strides in modernization, especially because of the money we have been getting from oil resources no matter how much we have been complaining. But we have taken a few steps forward and a number of steps backward. In the field of education for instance, I had earlier narrated the educational exploits of our people within the then Eastern Region and the whole of Nigeria but, today, Rivers State is referred to as an educationally disadvantaged state.

How can it be that before independence, most of the educated people were from our part of the country, who opened up the whole of the Eastern Region and that after the creation of our state, we now pride ourselves with the insignia of an educationally disadvantaged state?

Let me give you one example of the educational feats of our people at Government College Umuahia, which I attended before the creation of Rivers State. There were many students like Dr. James Cookey Gam, Dr. Michael Peterside, Dr. Robert Okara, Prof. Kelsey Harrison, Dr. Sam Epelle, Capt. Dr. Elechi Amadi, Brig. George T. Kurubo, Prof. E. J. Alagoa, Dr. George Ogan, Ken Saro-Wiwa, King Dr. Edmund Daukoru, Emeritus Prof. Nimi Briggs, etc from this part of the country in the college, but one particular student struck me.  He is Prof. Y. O. Beredugo who came first in his class, every term, three times in the year, from class one to class five. Next to him was Elechi Amadi and I can name more people like them.  In fact, out of four of us from Rivers State that were honoured during the 2014 Nigeria Centenary Celebration, three were from Government College Umuahia. They are Prof. Kelsey Harrison, and myself honoured among 9 (nine) as Distinguished Academics, and Brig G. T. Kurubo, the 1st Head of Nigeria Air Force. That is to say that even the Nigeria Centenary Committee recognized the educational status and contributions of our people. But all that is now history, we have lost our position and pride of place as Rivers people.

Chief Melford Obene Okilo

We thank God that a man like the late Chief Melford Okilo came on the scene as governor of Rivers State between 1979 and 1983. Chief Okilo brought back to the state three Professors to help him organize governance in order to advance the state. They were the late Prof. Tekena Tamuno; Prof Turner T. Isoun both from the University of Ibadan and myself from the University of Nigeria. One of the outcome of that endeavour was the upgrading of the then Rivers State College of Science and Technology to the Rivers State University of Science and Technology in 1980. In his famous inaugural speech, Chief Okilo enunciated the vision and mission of the founding fathers of the university thus:

“A unique and uncommon university that should be structurally and philosophically oriented to solving practical, and in particular, the peculiar and difficult problems of the Rivers State; and that the university should be ultimately dove tailed into our development process – industry, agriculture, commerce, provision of infrastructure, etc. and should serve as the engine for the generation of indigenous technology and that the Rivers State University of Science and Technology would unleash the creative and innovative capabilities of our people for the solution of our problems and enhance the quality of life; It should train both the mind and the hand”

It was obvious that the report of the Willink’s Commission of Inquiry into the fears of our delta dwellers people, influenced the drafting of the vision/mission of the university and Okilo funded the institution so very well and it was the first University of Science and Technology in Nigeria. The Rivers State University of Science and Technology still prides itself that COREN, the professional body that accredits departments in the Faculty of Engineering, came to the university in 1982, less than two years after it was established and accredited all five departments of the Faculty of Engineering in the very first visit This has not happened again in the history of universities in Nigeria.

Alabo Prof. Dagogo Fubara

In fact, at the time I left the University of Nigeria, Nsukka (a first generation Nigerian University), only three of the five Departments in the Faculty of Engineering had been accredited. But because Governor Okilo understood the important role of Science and Technology in human development, he enabled RSUST to achieve that feat.

Today, all the equipment Okilo put in the university is obsolete and unfortunately, since after him, successive governments have never funded the Rivers State University of Science and Technology in a manner that could continue and maintain the pride of place that it had. There was a period that for many years, government only paid staff salaries and did nothing in terms of equipment for teaching and research.

Lately, we have shown a complete lack of understanding about the naming of the institution as a University of Science and Technology and we have changed the name to Rivers State University. But let me say that, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a foremost university in America but it does not bear the name university but its mandate specifies all the areas of studies in the fields of economics, arts, science and technology, literature etc. Imperial College, London, is one of the most famous University education institutions in Great Britain. It is not even called University. It is not the name that makes an institution a university; it is NOT NAME of a university that determines what courses it can teach but what the Law/Mandate of the university stipulates; it is not the hood that makes the monk. So why change the name. I wrote to Governor Wike against the change of name as suggested by the Honourable Members of the Rivers State House of Assembly.

We now have a Strategic Five-Year Development Plan for the university of which I was chairman of the committee that produced the plan. The government should try to fund the institution and bring education to a level where we can be talking about a technology based economy. The economies of Nigeria and Rivers State are backward because they are not technology based; they are import dependent and funded by oil money and now that revenues from oil are dwindling, everybody is beggarly.

Science and Technology is God’s way of teaching us how to have dominion over everything He created because in creation God said man should have dominion over everything He created. How can we have dominion over what God created when we were not there? Only God the father, the Son and the Holy Ghost created everything. So how can we have dominion over what was created when we were not there and were not a party to?

However, God who keeps covenants, reveals to man what we call science. God put oil in the ground, which we didn’t know existed until the white man discovered it through science revealed to him by God. How do we refine crude oil? How do we live better than other animals who God did not empower to have dominion over His creation?

All animals sleep at night but they have no houses and no clothing but human beings live in houses and even generate electricity. God is so faithful that he has given us Science and technology to enable us have dominion over everything He created – our economy, our oil resources etc. but we have not allowed what God said to happen in Rivers State. We have not promoted Science and Technology to have dominion and improve the lives and security of our people. Rather, the leaders out of greed are just accumulating wealth for themselves, the wealth they would take to nowhere after death as we all must surely die one day.

Apart from education, another area that we have taken backward steps is industrialization. Today, Lagos State that was created at the same time as Rivers State produces about 50% of Value Added Tax (VAT) into the Federation Account while Rivers State produces only 6% of the VAT. The reason is that whereas the Ikeja Industrial Complex in Lagos State is flourishing, the Trans-Amadi Industrial layout in Rivers State is about 80% dead instead of growing.

When we talk of unemployment which is leading the youths to get into cultism, it is because there is no industrialization in Rivers State as there is no promotion and application of science and technology.

On Infrastructure, I told you that when I first came to Port Harcourt in 1948, there was public tap portable water supply but for many decades now there has been no public water scheme.

Rivers State is still a one-city state.  What prevents us from making Bori, Ahoada, Eleme, Abonnema etc. to develop into cities thereby creating employment.  Degema was established by the white man but we have allowed it to decay.  When I was in primary school in Opobo and Abonnema, these towns were bubbling seaports.  Bonny used to be and but for oil, Bonny should have been dead.  We have not been able to develop other cities apart from Port Harcourt; we have not harnessed the economies of the coastal communities to that of the capital city. We cannot therefore say that Rivers State is growing in the real sense of the word.

Another factor that is hindering Rivers State from achieving some of the dreams of the founding fathers is insecurity. Our youths are ruining and killing themselves with money allegedly given to them by politicians to buy guns. They should be told that the children of all the big politicians, the leaders and elites are either in Abuja, Lagos or abroad where they are safe and not involved in being killed.

 

Question: Prof, you were the Special Adviser to Governor Melford Okilo (1979-1983) on Flood and Erosion. What exactly did your office achieve?

Answer: Thank you. As I said, the “Gentleman from Ijaw Land” as he was fondly called, Melford Okilo, was a foresighted leader like Alfred Diette-Spiff, who knew that he couldn’t do it all alone and I have told you how he brought three of us professors back home to assist him.

Yes, you are right, Okilo created the Directorate of Flood, Erosion Transportation and Reclamation in the Governor’s Office in 1979 and put me in charge as Director.  I moved eventually from there to the Rivers State University of Science and Technology where he created the Institute of Flood, Erosion, Reclamation and Transportation and I was its Director too until 1998.

We achieved quite a number of things. First, we focused on the fact that Rivers State is part of the territory that the Willink’s Commission described as difficult to develop. One of the problems was transportation and so the Okilo administration cut a number of canals because we advised him that canals would ease riverine transportation. By this, the journey from Port Harcourt to Abonnema that used to take three hours then took just an hour.

We embarked on reclamation which started in Okrika but unfortunately, Okilo was in a hurry and that one didn’t quite succeed because he did not adhere to my technical advice in the hurry to show ill-planned achievement like most Nigerian leaders are prone to do. But in Opobo Town, we have the first shore protection similar to what we have in Marina, Lagos. I come from Opobo and I insisted that the right procedure was done through proper study and design and when we took it to then President Shehu Shagari, he gave us money for reclamation and shore protection that shall endure for about the next 100 years and part of the money was used to save Queenstown island community by foreshore reclamation and embankment. I did not personally enrich myself with one kobo of the project N 8.7 million in 1982.

Also, we protected the front shore of Amasoma town and protected Otuokpoti town where we constructed drainage scheme with flood water pumping system. Okilo came from a place where he said the place used to be underwater for six months of the year and he understood what flood was. We can go on and on to name the various towns, however, we were not in office long enough to carry out the one at Abonnerna, Bonny, Famgbe, Odi, etc. but our activities were pointers that we can get land from our swamps, control erosion and cut canals to ease transportation.

 Question: You were also a member of the Economic Advisory Council to the Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi led administration. How did that council impact governance?

Answer: In fact, that was not the beginning of its kind. The very first was when I served Governor Oyakhilome, leading to the establishment of the “School to Land” scheme, before I served under Military Governor Anthony Ukpo as Chairman of the Governor’s Advisory Panel. It was a small Governor’s Advisory Panel made up of the Late Garrick Leton, current Senator Andrew Uchendu, Prof. Willy Okowa, one late Pharmacist and myself.

Anthony Ukpo

I duff my hat for Governor Ukpo for the way he used us without pay.  He made sure that every proposal made to government by anybody was sent to us to advise and comment on before he took decisions. Even in the appointment of Commissioners, we determined the criteria that he used. We made sure that he didn’t put square pegs in round holes, which is what often happens nowadays.

In America from where we copied the presidential system, individuals are nominated for particular ministries/departments and are screened and interviewed for their efficiency and ability to perform in the ministries based on their education and previous work experience. But in Nigeria, we just give list of names to the Senate and the State Houses of Assembly and the nominees are asked general questions or they are simply asked to take a bow and go.

Governor Ukpo most effectively listened to our advice on virtually every memo from his commissioners and others. Notably, as I advised him, he injected N200 Million in 1986 to resuscitate PAN AFRICAN BANK as a means of promoting Rivers people business.  The greed of the Rivers people he put in charge to manage the bank killed it.  He listened to my advice and gave me N10 Million to set up the Bori Polytechnic within 6 months.

The next was when Governor Odili inaugurated us including the late Sir Francis Ellah, the late Chief Onoh Graham-Douglas, Late Prof. Tekena Tamuno, Barrister Wifa and others. With all due respect, I regret to say that Governor Odili didn’t quite listen to our advice. I am not saying that he should have taken everything we told him but we had little or no impact from the numerous recommendations we made to Odili.

In the Amaechi’s administration, he did listen to a number of things we told him but Rivers State would have risen to even greater height had Amaechi listened to much of what we advised should be done. We tried our best in the circumstance of competing suggestions from the political class.

Gov. Amaechi

One project that we advised against was the Monorail. Ordinarily, it is a good idea to provide mass transportation but we needed to talk about the cost effectiveness given the resources available at the time. If we were financially capable to build the Monorail from Port Harcourt to Oyigbo, that would have been one of the best things to have happened to mass transit in Rivers State. But it was obvious that we couldn’t afford it. In life, there are certain important things that are not urgent and there are urgent things that are not important and so we go for things that are both important and urgent. The Monorail was important but not urgent because we couldn’t afford it to its logical completion. Only God knows when the dream of completing and extending it to Oyigbo to provide proper mass transit would be achieved. We all know the ordeal and how much time it takes to travel from Port Harcourt to Oyigbo and vice versa.

The Economic Advisory Council was useful to Governor Amaechi, he listened to a number of things we said, much more than some of the previous governments. My advice to all our leaders is that when they set up bodies like this, they should please seriously consider submissions from the bodies before ignoring them.

 Question: You are a prominent member of the Rivers State Elders and Leaders Council. Why are the elders unable to take ownership of the state? Why are they unable to speak out against societal ills like cultism, militancy kidnapping and bad governance?

Answer: Well, the elders under Chief A. K. Horsfall are trying again to get all the elders and leaders from all parts of Rivers State to work together.

First, we have not succeeded in unanimously proclaiming a leader because we are very badly polarized and divided along political lines which should not be the case among elders. I tell people that our communities, state and country existed before these political parties were formed. I agree that everyone should join a political party of his/her choice but when it comes to what is the common good, we must not let our affiliations to these political parties blur our vision. We are not going to move forward by calling white black because of our political inclinations. Senior Elder/Statesmen over 75 years like us should not belong to or be propelled by political party affiliations.

This is why that body has not been able to harness all the people who ought to be in the fold, as some elders come and go and only a few of us have regularly attended every meeting of that body. There are some elders who ought to be in the fold but have stayed away because they don’t like the man who is leading the body. That shouldn’t be at all if we must make progress; we should deemphasize the messenger and take the message.

Talking about cultism and militancy among the youths, we can only take a horse to the water but we can’t make it drink. We have not been able to make the youths to understand that they are being armed to kill themselves and that is not the way to go. It is not as if we have not spoken against militancy and cultism and the need for security, the biggest problem is that, the elders are themselves not united. The unprecedented political divide is blurring our vision now more than ever before.

We can’t succeed in giving true leadership directions until we defeat disunity and adherence to political division and take our proper positions as elders and begin to speak for the common good of Rivers people, for the security of the people, for the welfare and economic development of the people.

 Question: You are a prominent Rivers ljaw Chief and leader. Would you say that Rivers Ijaw people have had a fair deal in terms of development in Rivers State?

Answer: No, we haven’t. We haven’t because as I said, a large portion of the Niger Delta area that the Willink Commission talked about, is occupied by the Ijaw people. The road to Bonny has been on the drawing board since 1963 and despite the contribution of Bonny to the economic development of Nigeria, that road has not been built. We still can’t access Opobo Town by road, it has been on the drawing board now since the days of Governor Odili; that is eight years plus eight years of Amaechi and now two years of Wike. For eighteen years and still counting, we still can’t access Opobo Town by road.

Alabo Prof Dagogo Fubara

We can go on and on about the plight of Rivers Ijaw communities. The Andoni people are complaining that what they have is still not an accessible road and that they have not felt the impact of governance in the area.

The other day, on national television, the issue about the utilization of the 13% derivation fund and how much of that is being plowed back into oil bearing communities was discussed. Statistics were available from most of the oil producing states but there was no information from Rivers State, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa and Delta.

Governance in Rivers State has been conducted in a manner that gives credence to the Willink’s Commission Report which clearly stated that the problems of the Niger Delta swamp dwellers are so enormous that those who dwell in the upland can hardly appreciate them let alone understand them. Why do we have all the tertiary institutions in Rivers State located in Port Harcourt and its mainland environs and none in the Rivers Ijaw homelands? What happen to the Technical College in Tombia?

Question: Prof, you have just gone into the issue that I want to raise in my next question. Most Rivers Ijaw people have lost faith in the ability of governors of non-Ijaw extraction to develop the coastal communities. They have therefore been agitating for the governorship position to rotate from the Upland to the River Ijaw area. What is your take?

Answer: I believe in that rotation. Politically, Rivers State had since the Second Republic, conducted itself along the Riverine and Upland configuration. At the national level, the presidency is rotated between the North and the South. Even in America when the President is from the North, the Vice President is usually from the South. The call for the rotation of the governorship to Rivers Ijaw is to balance this equation, it is a good thing to do, it is justice and it is based on truth. Without Truth and Justice there can be no peace. Without peace there can be no sustainable development and security of lives and property.

Rivers Ijaw people put Odili in power in 1999 against a Rivers Ijaw son from Buguma.  ljaw Leaders know what we did to make sure that Chief Ebenezer lsokrari did not win. We were not parochial at the time but now parochialism has taken over governance in Rivers State.

As an elder, I must tell them that parochialism has taken us over and the justice of rotating power between the Riverine and the Upland is being abandoned. Some people are now saying that there is neither Upland nor Riverine. How can anybody say that when even the 1958 British Willinks Commission report so acknowledged? The cost to build a kilometer of road in the Riverine area will build five kilometers of road in the Upland.

Like I said, because Governor Okilo came from a flood ravaged area, he understood the difficulties of the Riverine people and when he was governor, he did a number of things for the Riverine communities but he also developed the Upland. But right now, the leaders are not doing the same which makes rotation of power imperative. Rotation of power is truth and justice. Where there is no truth and justice, there can never be peace and progress. Power rotation between the Upland and Rivers Ijaw will ensure justice, peace and harmony in Rivers State.

Let me speak bluntly to our Rivers Ijaw politicians that, unfortunately, most of them have been lethargic and have lost focus on how to achieve this dream. They have been overtaken by ill-preparation and by greed and have refused to unite and pool their resources together. When the Upland presents one governorship candidate, why should Rivers Ijaw present eleven or more governorship candidates and yet expect to win? That is borne out of myopic self-centeredness and greed.

Nobody will surrender power to Rivers Ijaw even if it is our right based on truth and justice. We have to take power by just and political purposeful consideration. Our people must eschew greed and self-centeredness and come together for the common good of the Rivers State and Riverine communities.

 Question: Prof; if you were to live another fifty years, what type of Rivers State would you like to see?

Answer: Well, I will soon be 80 years old, and even though one of my grandsons told me that “grandpa, you will live to be 145 years”, that is his own dream and if God so determines and Christ tarries, I may get there.

During the next 50 years, I would like to see the emergence of leaders who have the kind of vision that propelled the late Chief Dr. Harold Dappa Biriye. It is said that where there is no good vision, the people perish. I would like to see the kind of leadership that does not loot the treasury at both the state and LGA levels. I would like to see a virile and legacy propelled House of Assembly.

I have always wondered what our current leaders need all the billions of naira and millions of Dollars being embezzled. I will like to see leadership at all levels driven by patriotism and focused on what legacies they can bequeath to the people for sustainable socio-economic and infrastructural development and security of lives and property. 

The country is awash with the call for restructuring. Yes, we need to restructure certain things in the Constitution that have caused inequity. However, the restructuring should begin with ourselves by eschewing greed, corruption and self-centeredness.

There is no country in the world where a Local Government Chairman has unfettered access to spend funds anyhow he likes and becomes fabulously rich overnight. There is no part of America where, with all due respect a governor controls funds like we do in Nigeria. There is no part of the world where the National Assembly allegedly spends on themselves 25% of the national annual budget.

The other day, I read about a retired military General who says that his annual pension, like mine, the retired 1st African Professor of Geodesy, is N1.8 million. How can he be in the same country where, according to him, a Senator takes N50 million a month, not a year from the national coffers. These are the inequities we must correct nationally in order to have a saner society.

Let’s emulate the life style of people like Dappa Biriye and the first Prime Minister of Nigeria, Alhaji Tafawa Balewa. It was after Balewa’s death that a house was built for his family and the late Chief Dr. Harold Dappa Biriye owned no house to my knowledge. They were selfless and their commitments were for the common good and the legacies they left behind. They were not Angels but they were committed to the development of their people.

Why should members of the National Assembly buy bulletproof cars if there was security? The reason they buy bulletproof cars is that they are afraid and if they had provided security, they won’t have to spend huge sums of public money to buy bulletproof cars.

These are some of the issues I would like to see resolved. I would like our leaders to focus on education. Our education has crumbled and it was not like this in the beginning. In the past we were well educated so much that when we left the shores of Nigeria to America, Europe or Canada, we were tops.

Today, school fees even in the nursery schools, are beyond the reach of the average parent and this breeds corruption. The missionary schools were built by Christian Churches and made very cheap and affordable but today, the churches collect tithes and offerings from the congregation to build expensive schools and Universities which the ordinary members cannot afford.

These acts of inequity and injustice cannot heal our land because God says that the condition for Him to heal our land is “if my people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from Heaven, and will forgive their sins and heal their land”. So, if we want God to heal our land, we must forsake our wicked ways.

There is too much wickedness in our society, corruption is one of them. Former President Obasanjo called a group of people “unarmed robbers”.  Our society adores and celebrates big unarmed robbers but kill small armed robbers. God says that He cannot heal our land unless we forsake our wicked ways. God is true to His words#

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