By Ugaba Emmanuel
As I was listening to President Donald Trump’s speech at the just concluded 72nd UNGA, I was moved to ask myself “when can we find patriotic Nigerians at the helm of affairs?”
The US President was concerned about the interest of America, the safety, welfare, and the overall interest of Americans, than his personal interest. That is what I call patriotism.
Our President, Muhammadu Buhari, is one among millions of Nigerians, he seems to be a lone ranger in the game of patriotism. His speech at the 72nd UNGA was full of concern for peace as a panacea for growth and development for Nigeria, Africa and the world at large.
His love for his country is amply demonstrated by his unwaivering efforts to fight corruption at all levels and to ensure that looted Nigerian money stacked in foreign banks are repatriated back to Nigeria.
In all these, coupled with the change mantra of the current administration, I have not seen any of our leaders, save for President Buhari, that have shown serious commitments towards placing the interest of Nigeria above personal interest.
I recalled with nostalgia, the quantum of monies and properties recovered from past public officers, the numerous cases involving corruption being prosecuted by the EFCC, the unpaid workers salaries, the dilapidated state of our roads and other infrastructures among so many others, and I wept and still weeping.
If our leaders are concerned about the interest of Nigeria and Nigerians, the welfare of the people, social and economic development of Nigeria would be upper most in the agenda of our political leaders.
Compare American movies with Nigerian movies, you will realise how American leaders will deploy every instruments required to defend and rescue their national trapped under any conditions. The Nigerian movies always showcase cultism, barbaric cultural activities, inordinate quest for money, among others.
Let the change we all cried for start from our leaders. Place the interest of Nigeria above personal interest and considerations.
The hues and cries for restructuring, secession and ethnic self determinations are consequences of non patriotic behaviors of our leaders.
A committed and patriotic leader will think about the interest of the nation as an indivisible entity first, her survival and development.
A patriotic Nigerian will love and prefer the Nigerian currency, the Naira and Kobo to the US Dollar and Cent. Nigeria is a country I have come to discover that the leaders prefer to use US dollars and British pound sterling to her own currency in transacting businesses within and outside the shores of Nigeria. A typical example was the use of Dollars in the 2015 election campaigns and discovery of same in personal houses by the EFCC as exhibits for alleged looted funds.
Nigerians wake up. Let us show love for our country by pursuing the interest of Nigeria first rather than personal interests. Nigeria is greater than individual. Our patriotism towards our country is a hall mark for our development, peace and security. We need to shun greed and allow decency to flourish in our daily activities so that Nigeria will be a better place to dwell in.