AS THE JOURNEY CONTINUES
NATIONAL ANTHEM OF NIGERIA
Arise, O compatriots, Nigeria's call obey
To serve our fatherland
With love and strength and faith
The labor of our heroes past
Shall never be in vain
To serve with heart and might
One nation bound in freedom, peace and
Oh God of creation, direct our noble cause
Guide our leaders right
Help our youth the truth to know
In love and honesty to grow
And living just and true
Great lofty heights attain
To build a nation where peace and justice
THE NATIONAL PLEDGE
I pledge to Nigeria my country
To be faithful, loyal and honest
To serve Nigeria with all my strength
To defend her unity and uphold her honor and glory
So help me God.
The Past And The Present Presidents and Head of States: (L to R) Abdulsalami Abubakar, Ernest Shonekan, Ibrahim Babangida, Olusegun Obasanjo, Goodluck Jonathan, Yakubu Gowon, Shehu Shagari and Muhammad Buhari. Photo: NEXT
Nigeria is 50 years today and the anniversary is filled with festivities. Nigerians deserved to sit down, reflect and look back on this amazing journey. Nigeria has made her mistakes but also have moments of joy and happiness. On the day the first president of Nigeria, The late RT. Honourable Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe saluted as Nigerian flag was hoisted and national anthem was played, Nigerians never anticipated that the journey would have been rocky with troubles and tribulations. Nigeria experienced civil war, military coups, IMF's austerity measures, depravity, corruption and many others. But in spite of all these, our great country is still standing and for this we shall thank God.
Nation-building is an arduous and difficult exercise. The path to Nigerian project was not easy rather paved with complexity. Sometime the vision of greatness is realized, while in some cases it ended in futility. Nigeria is not exempted from the mistakes and errors of nation building. We as a nation have missed many opportunities and have gone astray. Nigeria has abandon the noble cause of being her Brother's keeper and have become selfish and egomania.
Nigerian youths the most important human resources and human capital have been neglected and they are not properly educated and fed. The odds against them are mountainous and cumbersome. Without positive and credible role models, Nigerian youths have nearly gone the path of emptiness but they continue to triumph and beat the odds. The leaders have disappointed the Nigerian citizens and have not done the right thing. The people are quick to point accusing fingers to the leaders while they dwell in their own moral laxity.
The infrastructures have deteriorated to a point that Nigerians do not have adequate health facilities, safe drinkable water and are now living in semi-darkness bedeviled with the electricity shortage. The educational facilities were almost destroyed that some of the graduates are carrying around empty degrees. Nigeria cannot provide jobs to the citizens and poverty has become almost universal in the Nigerian world. The climax is lack of security in the country - kidnapping and robbery have become the most lucrative enterprise for the youths.
Nigeria has her triumphs; Nigerians continue to co-exist as a nation in spite of the naysayers. Many have labeled Nigeria a failed state, but ordinary men and women of goodwill in Nigeria continue to believe in the Nigerian project. These hardworking Nigerians wake up in the morning everyday and thank God and go on living. They raised their children by eking out a living and they hope for a better Nigeria. These average Nigerians make a way where there is no way. They continue to pray for their country and hope that things will get better. These are our patriots and shining amours, for their devotion and commitment to Nigeria is without comparison. To all these men and women; we salute and raise our caps.
Our time for revival and transformation has come and Nigeria cannot afford to fail. Africa and world needs Nigeria to make it and reclaim her giant of African status. Nigeria has the natural and human resources to become one of the most relevant nation in the 21st century.
A task for our leaders and citizens of Nigeria is to envision a nation of freedom, liberty, equality unity and justice. We can make our country even greater, when we work together, dream together and live together. Nigeria! the sky is your limit and your next fifty years can be more promising and more fulfilling by living according to your national anthem and pledge - by building a nation where peace and justice shall reign.
Happy Anniversary and May God Bless Nigeria!