Saturday, February 27, 2021
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ideas have consequences

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Displaying items by tag: sade

Press Statement from the NAL Council Washington, DC

The rule of law is the foundation and bedrock of any democracy.  In a given democracy, there are matters that are not justiciable, because the matters are not envisaged to be within the purview of justice, such as international treaties between nations, or matters that are taken directly to the people, by way of a referendum; or legislative matters taken up by an appropriate legislature. 

The matter of Senator Bukola Saraki, which is currently before an appropriate court or tribunal in Nigeria, is a fully justiciable matter, and therefore should not be resolved through political or other meddlesomeness.  The Nigerian people, who have been victimized by various plunders by various leaders, must have a resolution on the merits in cases of this nature.  This is nothing personal against Senator Saraki or other politically exposed persons, but the rule of law needs to prevail in these cases.    

Further, according to the thorough research of our NGO partners in Nigeria, this current saga is actually a tip of the iceberg, as there are other formidable matters against various Nigerian leaders that are in the offing, and will be brought to justice in due course.

However, when a person high or low in any given society runs afoul of existing laws, the matter must require a resolution according to the laws of the land; anything less portends clear and present danger of imminent anarchy in the land. 

Indeed, the prosecuting authorities and the adjudicating authorities (judges) in Nigeria, will not have the moral right to prosecute and convict a “kidnapper”, an “armed robber”, or a “terrorist”; if they cannot summon the courage to absolve themselves from potential compromise by lucre, in other to avoid perversion of justice, per any any other accused persons versus 180 million Nigerians.  Unless the judges want to show us that some persons are above the law, in which case it will become a matter of everyone for themselves.

Therefore, in the interest of justice for 180 million Nigerians, who may have been plundered by various Nigerian leaders, the Nigerian judiciary should be resolute in delivering justice to 180 million Nigerians in these matters.  Anything less than a ruling grounded in law and merit, will signal impunity and portend danger for the future of the Republic of Nigeria. 

S. Okey Mbonu Executive Director at NAL Council, ( In the middle with red tie)  with other members of the councilS. Okey Mbonu Executive Director at NAL Council, ( In the middle with red tie) with other members of the councl

The potential dangers of justice perverted in these matters may not be fully anticipated yet; but it will at a minimum invite for starters, heightened scrutiny on the actual judges that delivered the ruling in a given matter.  We have said in the past, that the long-arms of our worldwide resources, in today’s globalized world, can unearth illicit resources, regardless of where they are hidden.

This moment in time is for justice for the hapless Nigerian citizenry, and justice should be grounded in law and merit, we’ll be watching closely.

Contact: Ingrid Bergman, Media Relations, NAL Council                                                               
1701 Pennsylvania Ave, NW Washington DC 20006                                                                              
Tel: 202 379-2848, Ext. 101, Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

About NAL Council
Nigerian-American Leadership Council ( is a Washington-based think-tank that is focused on Nigeria and on US-Nigeria relations.  The Council has been featured and cited in major US Media network in the US and Overseas; and provided expert testimony on US-Nigeria relations at various Washington Institutions.  The Council has been adjudged by the US Media, as “A Powerful Voice” on US-Nigeria Affairs (MSNBC February 14, 2015).

Image of a nation might as well be the destiny of a nation. Nigeria's disfigured image in the global village has become an insignia of dishonest, dishonor and disrespect; this is outright humiliation of a nation of almost 150 million people. Majority of Nigerians are industrious, God-fearing and law abiding people. But a tiny minority is destroying the image of the country and the governance ineptitude is adding salt to the injury.

Consequentially, Nigeria is in self-doubt, bedeviled with nihilism, lethargy and encompassing corruption. Now comes the climax, a Nigerian was associated with terrorism and finally the image of the country is demolished. What Nigeria needs is genuine re-branding and re-alignment that is not cosmetics but rooted in truth, pragmatism and an affirmative change.

"There's no arguing that the image we have of another country says a lot about how we view it as a tourist destination, a place to invest or a source of consumer goods." And the rest of world's perception about Nigeria will affect her pocket and economy because less people will be incline to invest and travel to the country. A nation re-branding is not peculiar to Nigeria; many countries including Germany and Japan were re-branded at the end of Second War World: Now Germany and Japan are known as liberal democracies with peaceful and progressive policies. South Africa was re-branded with an image of gentle and cheerful multicultural country at the end of Apartheid.

The litany of Nigerian sins and misbehaviors are no longer a news to the entire world, as the world have come to see the intractable problems of Nigeria as threat to global financial and economic stability. Nigeria is known for e-mail fraud, manipulation of established standard operations and now for terrorism. The peril of this dented image is taking its toil on the average citizen of Nigeria who cannot freely travel nor conduct international business. Nigeria with all the wealth she generated from oil and local revenues cannot provide the basic necessities of life to her populace.

Many Nigerians are quick to point accusing fingers to the country's leadership but fail to see themselves as part and parcel of the unworkable Nigeria. By no means, nobody is excluding the elite and ruling class from the generated mess but the masses cannot fold their hands and anticipate a change to initiate itself. The average Nigerians must also shoulder some responsibilities by shunning corruption including coming to work on time and rejecting short /dubious path to wealth accumulation.

There are enduring and lingering ramifications that are associated with poor and disastrous image of a nation. The financial and economic impact is overwhelming especially on the wealth of nation, wealth creation and GDP. The wealth of nation and its creation must involve the attraction of foreign capitals and manpower. No serious capitalist desire to invest his wealth in a nation of untrustworthy people. Subsequently, economic downturn does give rise to mammoth unemployment; that can trigger instability and inability for government to protect lives and properties.

In 21st century of inter connecting world, an image can help to lift up a nation and this is exactly why many nations are very protective of their images. Once an image of a nation is tarnished it becomes an arduous if not an impossible task to reverse the trend. The only hope for Nigeria is that an image of a nation is neither indelible nor etched in stone. For Nigeria it is never too late to commence to make the affirmative moves in the comprehensive transformation of the country's image.

The total transformation of Nigeria's image must be deliberate, coherent and self-evident. This is not going to be superficial, a tinkering at the peripheral with piecemeal characteristics similar to toddler step taken by respectful Dora Akunyili, Nigerian Minister of Information, as she tries to re-brand her country. With all due respect, her tactics of blaming game is self-defeating, incoherent and contradicts her objective. Re-branding and image making of a nation is not a singular act but a collective effort of patriots including men and women of goodwill.

In paper presentation on Vision 2020 Nigerian project, I reiterated the importance of Nigeria's Image Management: "Nigerian policy and decision makers have not certainly explored the power of image making. The image of a nation both abstract and aesthetic speaks a volume of the nation. Nigeria must be able to tell the world that she is ripe for investment and tourism without obstruction. No foreign institutions or countries can tell the world about Nigeria more than Nigerians could do. Nigeria cannot afford to be NAIVE and NONCHALANT."Nigeria must undergo fundamental paradigm change and must be focused on a path of transformation and progress. It is not going to be a picnic nor an ego trip but a deliberate act with superior intellectual power to give birth to a new Nigeria. This is not about hiring international image consultants that will cost millions of dollars.

It is about Nigeria and Nigerians undergoing a candid self examination and making decision to do the right thing for the interest of her citizens, our children and posterity. When the fundamental changes are made, then Nigeria may hire media specialist and spokesperson to tell the story of the new Nigeria to the world. Many well known people of Nigerian heritage including musical superstars Sade, Seal, Slash of Guns and Roses; media star Adaora Udoji and sport stars Christian Okoye, Nnamdi Asomugha, and many others can be employed to be the spokespersons for the country.

Nigeria at this point in time is left with one alternative which is to rebuild her image if she desires to be relevant in geo-political and economic affairs of our shrinking global village. If Nigeria fails to travel the pathway of revival, reawakening and rebirth she will end up becoming a sinking ship and diminishing giant of Africa. Nigeria to be respectful and relevant in 21st century she must rise to the challenge of self transformation and revitalization.

Africa Political and Economic Strategic Center (Afripol) is foremost a public policy center whose fundamental objective is to broaden the parameters of public policy debates in Africa. To advocate, promote and encourage free enterprise, democracy, sustainable green environment, human rights, conflict resolutions, transparency and probity in Africa.

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