NIGERIA@60: We are better than we were yesterday… —Tinubu

NIGERIA@60: We are better than we were yesterday… —Tinubu

National leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has averred that at 60 Nigeria is better off than it was before.

Tinubu who stated this in his 60th Independence anniversary statement to Nigerians on Wednesday, was also optimistic that things would still get better in Nigeria.

He said, “We move closer to the reality of a greater nation based on a more just and compassionate society. Because of you, the fine and patriotic people who are this nation, we are better than we were yesterday but not quite as good as we shall be tomorrow”.

On the nation’s independence, he said, “We honor our independence not because it is a day on the calendar. We value this independence because it allows – in fact demand of us – that we assess and define ourselves and our nation as we deem fit. That we define our society, its economy and political institutions in a manner that answers the questions we pose to them instead of responding to the demands of outside forces.

“We cherish our independence so that we may build a society according to the humane and progressive values that animate us, and that we not lie supine and beholden to interests that care nothing for us, save that we serve them.

“We cherish our independence because we are  Nigeria   and Nigeria is us. As one, we are greater and more capable than the sum of our individual parts.

“During these trying times we face, many will ask why should I love this nation? What has it given me? It has given us a large potentially bountiful home. No power on earth can divest your rights to and in this home. Yet, with ownership comes responsibility. You have the inalienable right, no duty, to build and improve this home as you see fit.

This is the true meaning of independence and we should observe this how we treat and relate to one another. Let us forever join in common purpose and strong bond to build Nigeria as a citadel of peace, a catalyst of prosperity and a tower of justice that wherever they may go in the world Nigerians can hold themselves proud. And wherever they may be in the world, their one thought is of returning to this fine and outstanding home we now build for ourselves of our own ingenuity, ideas and of our very independence”.

According to him, Nigerians do not commemorate  Independence Day   as some empty ritual. It is not some excuse to begin the 10th month of the year with a holiday. “Instead, it is an annual reminder and affirmation of the noble and excellent trek upon which we have embarked as a people. During these 60 years we have passed important milestones and progressed in many ways. We have endured long nights that skeptics said would end us. In my own state of Lagos we have transformed what many had written off as a dying city into a dynamic hub of commerce, openness and infrastructural development”.

He also admitted, “I would be less than honest if I did not state we have often stumbled and lost our way at times since we gained independence. Brother has fought against brother. We spilled blood that ought not have been spilled. We have squandered opportunity. We have let our immense potentials lay idle and stagnant. But not any more. Those things are remnants of the past for which we now draw important lessons to guide us to a more optimistic and fecund tomorrow”.

He also said, “The sixty years Nigeria has stood as an independent land may seem long in the life of a man, but in the life of a nation it has been but a single breath. Wisdom instructs us to love our nation for it is truly an unfortunate son who hates his own home and family. However, wise and enlightened it may be to love Nigeria as a nation that is still insufficient. It only gets us halfway to where we need to go”.

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