As leaders from across the various political divides felicitate with Nigerians on the country’s 60th independence anniversary, National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, yesterday, said despite challenges of the past, the nation is now on the path to progress.
The former governor admitted that as a nation, “we spilled blood that ought not to have been spilled. We have squandered opportunity.” The former governor of Lagos State, who stated this in an independence message he titled: “Independent For Good Reason,” said under the APCled Federal Government, the nation is now building the institutional framework and infrastructural networks that will bring forth an era of beneficial growth and development for all Nigerians. According to Tinubu, Nigeria is moving closer to the reality of a greater nation based on a more just and compassionate society as there is no doubt that the nation is better than it was yesterday. His words: “Three score years ago, our people determined to amend their political relationship with the world as well as the relationship among themselves.
From the unfairness and limitations inherent in the colonial situation, we claimed our independence to establish our own way that we might be servile to none. “We asserted our independence that we may be the most populous, most powerful and most prosperous nation in Africa and, in the process, lead our continent and our race into a more just and equable condition. “Thus we 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.”
Praising the APC government for putting the country on the path of progress, Tinubu said: “We press onward despite the unique difficulties and challenges posed this year by the global pandemic and its attendant economic difficulties. In fact, Nigeria should be proud of how it decisively managed this challenge. For among the world’s most populous nations, we rank among the least affected by the scourge.
This we owe primarily to the merciful hand of God, but also to the sage actions of government and the civic responsibility of the people.” Urging Nigerians not to be discouraged by failures of the past, the APC national leader, said: “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 to have been spilled. We have squandered opportunity. We have let our immense potentials lay idle and stagnant. But not anymore. Those things are remnants of the past for which we now draw important lessons to guide us to a more optimistic and fecund tomorrow. “The 60 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….
“Today, let us not just celebrate the political space we call Nigeria. Let us celebrate the decent, industrious and kind people who make Nigeria what it is and who strive with care and passion to bring Nigeria closer to what it ought to be.”