Ogun State governor, Dapo Abiodun, has urged Nigerians not to despair, saying that a greater Nigeria is possible in the foreseeable future.
Abiodun said no matter the prevailing circumstances, the country has proven to be an enigma, defying all predictions by pundits that it would not survive but “Nigeria has always wriggled out of the most difficult situation better. I have no doubt that Nigerians should be hopeful and we all must be ready to contribute to that future which we desire. Be hopeful. As a nation, we are moving towards a better Nigeria.”
The governor expressed this optimism at a special church service to mark Nigeria’s 60th Independence Day celebration held at the Cathedral Church of St. Peters, Ake, Abeokuta, at the weekend.
He noted that the task ahead “is a collective one. We shouldn’t allow the prophesies of doom to define us. With prayers and given the human and material resources available, believe that things would get better.”
Abiodun, who recalled that many countries that gained independence with Nigeria are no longer together, said: “They have either been balkanised by their internal realities or civil war. We have survived many vicissitudes and despite numerous challenges, especially in the area of economy and security, the country is still together and would move forward more prosperously.
“Despite all predictions, Nigeria is still standing. Our diversity is our strength. We are a resilient and confident people. We surmounted the civil war, and Boko Haram. Tomorrow will bring the best in us. All we need do is to work together. Nigeria will move forward. We must not prophesy doom. Nation building is not for government alone, but the responsibility of all.
“We were able to manage COVID-19 very well. We defeated Ebola, which was deadlier.”
The governor, who disclosed that the state, in conjunction with the Federal Government, would embark on the construction of 10,000 low cost housing units across the state, said the houses, which would be built under the social housing project, in the next three years, would provide accessible and affordable houses to Nigerians.
He said though the COVID-19 pandemic had taken a toll on the economy of the country, his administration was addressing the issues of power and infrastructure by ensuring that interrupted power was made available for small and medium business concerns, as well as interconnecting roads to neighbouring states.
He enjoined Nigerians to continue to pray and remain united, as the future of the country was looking good.
In his sermon, the Retired Primate, Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Most Revd Peter Akinola, decried the state of bloodletting in the country, saying that for the nation to experience development, efforts must be made to stop bloodletting, while the people must repent of their sins.