Former President Goodluck Jonathan on Saturday charged Nigerians to be circumspect in the exercise of their voting rights, saying, “We must shift away from the politics of bread and butter.”
He also lamented that efforts of past leaders, especially those of the First Republic to unite Nigeria failed because they were regional but not nationalistic in their programmes and policies.
Jonathan, however, explained that the leaders did their best to also position the country for economic prosperity, while the attempts yielded more to centrifugal forces which reinforced ethnic interests.
Jonathan stated this in his paper titled: ‘Lasting legacy: Key to Nigeria’s development issues’, at the one-year memorial lecture in honour of late Captain Hosa Okunbo in Abuja.
According to him, the present crop of leaders inherited a country that was already balkanised into three regions and later four regions.
Jonathan said, “I believe that the legacy of nationhood and roots of unity were weak at Nigeria’s independence and not much has been done since then to strengthen the base of the union.
“The decision to shift away from the regional arrangement to a national focus, where Nigerians will begin to see their country as their common heritage, need a different orientation, planning, strategy and adaptation.
“My charge to Nigerians is to be circumspect in the exercise of their voting rights. We must shift away from the politics of bread and butter and ensure that we do not elect leaders that will buy our conscience today and mortgage the future of our children and grandchildren. We should endeavour to elect only those that will leave legacies of unity, peace and development.”
At the event, a former Minister of Education, Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili urged politicians to develop the education sector, she lamented would continue to elude Nigeria and other African countries if the political class does not invest in education.
She said, “When you look at the parameters and issues in our country, especially the current data, it shows that the continent is in crisis and it has to deal with some of the things that the former President Jonathan said about society, It’s that nine out of every 10 Africans do not have the literacy and numeracy skills required of Children of their age in other parts of the world.”
In a similar vein, spokesperson for the Atiku presidential campaign, Dino Melaye, recalled how Capt. Hosa Okunbor, assisted him in the past.
He described Jonathan as “the most productive immediate past President Nigeria ever had.”
Meanwhile, former governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole, said Jonathan left a lasting legacy that set a pedestal for his successors.
He said, “Part of your legacy was when you launched the almajiri school and your thought was that no Nigerian child should be left on the street and also appropriated special funds.” he said.
In addition, the Olu of Warri and son-in-law of the deceased, Ogiame Atuwase III decried the glorification of stomach infrastructure in Nigeria’s political culture.
While lauding Jonathan for not upturning the presidential elections in 2015, the monarch decried the lack of trust in the country.
He said, “As a nation, we are in a situation of raw survival which fosters an environment that escalates grievances and creates social chaos. And before we know it, we are in a culture of deception and there is no peace where there is no trust. And there is no trust where there is no truth in words, which is why it’s easy for not just politicians, anyone really to just say something and they don’t believe in what they are saying.”
2023: Don’t Vote For Killers, Jonathan Warns Nigerians
Former president, Goodluck Jonathan, has warned Nigerians not to vote for those he described as “killers” during the 2023 election.
Jonathan stated this on Sunday in Uyo during a special interdenominational service to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the creation of Akwa Ibom State.
READ ALSO: 2023: Jonathan Campaigns Against Violence
“In 2023, you must not make the mistake to vote killers.
“Those who will carry knives, guns, and all kinds of gadgets to go and kill people because of politics, are the enemies of society.
“If you kill to become a leader, you will continue to kill to remain a leader.
“The people will continue to suffer. Make sure that from the House of Assembly to the House of Representatives to Senate to governor, you vote for the right people in Akwa Ibom State,” Jonathan said.
$23m Abacha Loot: Group Drags Buhari, Malami To Court Over Nigeria’s Agreement With US
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sued President Muhammadu Buhari over the agreement between Nigeria and the United States for the repatriated $23 million stolen by Sani Abacha.
Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) is a respondent in the suit.
The agreement signed in August followed the $311 million Abacha loot returned by America in 2020.
In suit FHC/ABJ/CS/1700/2022 filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja, SERAP is asking the court to direct the President and Malami to make the details public.
The body wants to know the mechanisms put in place to ensure that the repatriated funds are not mismanaged, diverted or re-stolen.
SERAP noted that the repatriated $23 million is vulnerable to mismanagement as a substantial part of the estimated $5 billion returned Abacha loot since 1999 remains unaccounted for.
The suit filed by Kolawole Oluwadare and Atinuke Adejuyigbe relies on the Nigerian Constitution, the Freedom of Information Act, and the country’s international obligations.
The lawyers said Nigerians look forward to the court’s favourable judgement as they are entitled to information about the use of public funds.
No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit which was instituted on Friday.
Delta Community Presents Akanigboro III To Chief Priests Of Ijaw Kingdoms’ Gods
Heir to the traditional stool of Akanigboro, King John Falabu Court, Akanigboro III, a priestly stool of ancient Mein Dynasty, has presented himself to the chief priests of the gods in Mein kingdoms.
Akanigboro III, addressing the chief priests at Ezebiri in Bomadi Local Government Area of Delta State, who came from the various Mein kingdoms, including from Mein ancestral home of Ogobiri in Bayelsa State and various Mein Kingdoms in Delta State, said he sought to present himself to them to inform them of his ascension to the ancient stool after much hesitations and refusal to the wish of his ancestors.
The meeting, which started with prayers to God in recognition of His supremacy over all creatures, featured questions, answers and advice.
Responding to questions of scrutiny from the chief priests, Akanigboro III, who went into historical lane, said: “The Akanigboro stool is a priestly stool and original kingship stool of Mein, progenitor of Mein clan, who was the first on the stool, being Akanigboro I.
“When Mein passed on, his son, Akan, ascended the stool and was Akanigboro II.
“When Akan passed on, there was a development that stalled the ascension process of a new ruler on the stool, which situation lingered for centuries with the kingdom in disarray without a ruler.
“It was this situation that led the children of Mein to leave our ancestral home, Ogobiri, in the present-day Bayelsa State, and migrated down to the present location called Western Ijaw, where they founded communities and kingdoms. More so, it was that same development that led the heir to the stool to migrate to the present location, Kpakiama and which history is known by all Mein descendants.
“Now, when I was growing up, I began to receive messages from the ancestors in my dreams that I’m the chosen one to ascend the Akanigboro stool, being a descendant of Ogubo, but I did not heed to the dreams.
“But, as time went on, seers from various places started telling me that I’m the chosen one to ascend the stool.
“With all these signs, I was hesitant until it got to a point I was disturbed by the ancestors which forced me to present issues, first to my family members, then to the people of Ogubo-ebede quarters who, in turn, presented me to Kpakiama urban community that I’m the chosen one and that I’m ready to ascend the stool of Akanigboro.
“However, the leadership and people of Kpakiama urban community received the news with joy and prayers to bring alive the ancient stool of their progenitor with the assurance that they’re ready to do the needful to ensure the Akanigboro stool takes its rightful place once again.
“The essence of calling you to converge here is to formally inform you that a chosen heir has ascended the ancient stool of Akanigboro. I was supposed to visit all communities in various Mein Kingdoms to inform you, but to make it easier, I opted to call all of you to Ezebiri. More so, I have earlier visited our ancestral home, Ogobiri, before this gathering here”.
In their response, the priests of the gods in Mein kingdoms, speaking through the chief priest, Mirror of the gods, Ezebiri, Chief Godwin Oroupade, thanked him for informing them and said that the Akanigboro stool rules over only three communities in Mein Clan, stressing they had no roles to play in his priestly stool since he’s not ruling over Mein Kingdoms.
Oroupade, who is the Eseduo of Kerebiri-Mein kingdom and Chairman, Priests of the gods in Mein kingdoms, said: “We have heard you. The Akanigboro stool is well-known but it’s not ruling over all Mein Kingdoms. “Therefore, we’ve no part to play in either confirming or accepting you.
“We, after our deliberations, have resolved to inform you that your stool is not ruling over Mein Kingdoms but it’s ruling over the children of Akan who found three communities, including Kpakiama, Bomadi and Bilabiri.
“So, we advise you to go and consult with your people, and if they accept you and your coronation is made ready, we, chief priests of the gods of Mein Kingdoms will come and celebrate with you.
“Again, I want to emphatically state here that no chief priest is having dominion or rulership over another in Mein Kingdoms.
“We’ve just formed an association where I’m the Chairman and I’m never a superior to any other chief priest, nobody is superior to anybody. We’re all chief priests in our various areas of abode and never a subject to anyone.
“We threw so many questions at you because of the misinformation about this gathering, as some people alleged that we’re preparing to install you in this gathering, which is unfounded because we’re no part of the Akanigboro stool, hence, we don’t have the powers to do so.
“So, go and consult with the people of Kpakiama, Bomadi and Bilabiri on the way forward for your stool”.
However, Akanigboro III thanked them for the warm reception and advice and promised to speak with his people for the successful resuscitation of the ancient stool.
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