In spite of the country’s meagre achievements and the developmental obstacles it has experienced since independence, former president Goodluck Jonathan has praised Nigerians for their tenacity and dedication to the nation.
In a message of goodwill to Nigerians on the occasion of the country’s 63rd Independence Anniversary, the former president made this statement and urged them not to give up on the mission of forging ahead with further progress for a better tomorrow.
In a statement released by his Special Adviser, Mr. Ikechukwu Eze, Dr. Jonathan
remarked that the occasion provides Nigerians with a chance to reflect on their country’s national development since independence.
His words, “It is now 63 years since our dear country got her independence from Britain. This commemoration offers us the opportunity to reflect on Nigeria’s great journey of nationhood; acclaim our modest strides, reassess the odds we survived, chart a path out of present challenges and renew our hopes for a greater tomorrow.
“Our country has seen progress as well as setbacks. Patriotic Nigerians, believing in their country, have always stood firm, sharing in the glory of successes and feeling the pain of missed opportunities.”
He stated further that if there was a sense of disappointment among our population, especially the youths, on the nation’s failed aspirations, over the years, such feeling was not entirely out of place.
“Yet, rather than despair, we should look back at the encouraging signposts that set the tone for an auspicious future and the promise that we could attain our growth and development goals. Our nation survived a civil war, pulled through economic downturns at different times and has continued to hold its ground against threatening socio-political challenges, leveraging that indomitable spirit that guided our nationalists to remain steadfast and focused. This is the same disposition that today strengthens our citizens and enlivens their spirit and hope against the menace of terrorism, insecurity, economic hardship and worsening effects of climate change,” he said.
Dr. Jonathan added that it is the spirit that pushes Nigerians to excel on the global stage in sports, medicine, music, arts, technology and scholarship.
“As we mark yet another independence anniversary, we should focus our energy towards enthroning equity, justice, peace and national cohesion in order to bring to fruition the dream of Nigeria realising its full potential and holding up the torch of liberty and progress for all Africans. Happy Independence Anniversary. God bless Nigeria.”