Dr. Sam Amadi, the director of the Abuja School of Political and Social Thoughts, has stated that while Nigeria looks forward to forging a fresh course from its history, her future might not lie with politicians.
He claims that Nigeria’s current generation of leaders lacks much optimism for the country’s future.
However, according to Amadi, a former chairman of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, the nation is endowed with a number of individuals who, if properly utilized, have the power to change the course of events.
Amadi stated that Nigeria needs a civic reawakening in a conversation with our correspondent in the early hours of Saturday when he discussed his views on the state of the nation as the country observes its 62nd Independence Anniversary.
He added that to solve challenges bedevilling the country, Nigeria needs proper diagnosis.
According to him, the most fundamental thing to do is to seek proper diagnosis of our problem. In strategy you cannot solve a problem without an accurate and appropriate diagnosis.
“After that (diagnosis) we develop a coherent set of actions to solve the problem. We have to go beneath the surface of our problems and see the underlying cause. The most important thing to is seek radical knowledge of our problems and be willing to address the roots.
“The most important thing is to lay a new constitutional foundations of Nigeria to turn it from a neo-feudal and neo-patrimonial state into a truly secular, modern democratic state focused on protecting the economic and political components of democratic citizenship.”
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Continuing, Amadi said, “Nigeria was a bright hope, a city on the hills by 1960 at independence. Today, Nigeria is a nation in distress. As a graduate student of Harvard in 2001, I described Nigeria to leading global thinkers as a country with an epileptic supply of social services like electricity.
“But today, with seven total blackouts in nine months, Nigeria has gone beyond epileptic supply of electricity. Nigeria is now more than a distressed country. Many will say Nigeria is a collapsed or failed country. Those who are charitable will say the country is collapsing of failing. But what is not disputable is that Nigeria had betrayed the trust, dashed the hope and broken the heart of its citizens and well-wishers across the world who looked forward with confidence to the birth of a new country that will prove that what one race can do another can do better.
“There has been several predictions of rising for Nigeria. Yet Nigeria is yet to rise. Nigeria has come of age, as it’s first Prime Minister declared. But it has not proved its skeptics wrong. Nigeria is a resilient country. But it is yet to become a prosperous and stable country. Probably Nigeria was misbegotten. But it is still our responsibility to correct the foundational errors and fulfill the hopes of the world leaders of a great Black Country in the African continent.”
On how to get out the woods, he said, “The present crop of leaders do not give much confidence about the future of Nigeria. But there many great people in the country.
“Nigeria’s future may not lie with the politicians. It may be more important at this point to raise great men and women who will be able to orchestrate new learning and social practices to recreate Nigeria. The political class is very important but they are not sufficient. We need civic reawakening. We need explosion of knowledge and expertise.”
On whether the frontline presidential candidates for next year’s election can be bring about the desired change for the country, Amadi explained that the All Progressives Congress presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, was not the right person to lead the country from 2023.
Amadi said Tinubu and his party were deficient in “ideological orientation” of its governing elites, hence his opposition to (Tinubu’s) candidacy.
He explained that with the need for civic reawakening, the presidential candidates of Peoples Democratic Party and Labour Party, Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi respectively stands a better chance of leading the country to the desired destination.
“I think Peter Obi and Atiku Abubakar are the best positioned to help Nigeria enter a new direction. The APC and Tinubu carry a deficit in terms of the temper and ideological orientation of its governing elite to make the desired change,” he told our correspondent.
On the lingering Academic Staff Union of Universities strike, the legal scholar faulted the Federal Government’s position, adding that it was the government’s responsibility to ensure schools are open for learning.
He also asked the university union to seek alternative way to making their grievance known rather than “primitive long strikes”.
“I think the FG’s position is faulty. The government has responsibility to ensure that schools are open and learning is going on as required. I think ASUU needs to change direction and end this primitive practice of long strikes. They should find a new way to pressure government to meet up with its obligations. Strike actions are very dangerous to a country and should be rarely used,” Amadi said.