What Obasanjo Said About Wike In Port Harcourt
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has hailed Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State for his courage and desire to ensure Nigeria’s democracy is not truncated.
The former President said the courage of the Rivers governor to speak truth to power and challenge any leader was essential for the survival of democracy in the country.
Naija News reports that Obasanjo stated this on Thursday during the 2023 Port Harcourt City International Conference in Port Harcourt.
Obasanjo, who delivered the Keynote address titled: ”Respecting the Principles of Democracy”, commended the organizers of the conference and Wike for putting his weight behind the intellectual discourse at this critical time.
He said: “Wike’s courage ‘is one of the things’ he believed were essential for the survival of democracy in Nigeria.”
Speaking further, Obasanjo advised the country’s leadership to deal with deep cultural and physiological problems to deepen democracy, adding that Nigeria had gone through twists, dives, and turns since its political independence.
Obasanjo said a nation that does not engage in conversation, self-analysis, self-criticism, regular reading and interactions cannot make meaningful and sustainable progress.
He said true democracy would promote patriotism and nationalism, build confidence in leaders and government and encourages the citizenry to reach a high point of their creative and production ability.
Obasanjo said that democracy when properly practised in the interest of peace, inclusion, national growth development, security and sustainability would address the nation’s problem.
According to him, no two democracies are exactly alike because democratic parties and institutions are shaped by the specifics of history, society, culture, nature of production and exchange, orientation, special balancing and the character of the government and the ruling elites.
Obasanjo said that as governing is completely open,the governing and ruling elites not anchored in production would not have the urge to invest in research and development, science and technology and good governance.
According to him, citizens that live in a democracy share common perspectives, petitions and commitments in the basic terms of democratic practice, and they may turn out to be beneficiaries or victims depending on the cause of the process and practice of democracy.
“If after six decades of political independence, our leaders are not showing clear capacities to provide a transformative leadership that unites Nigerians and contains ethnic, religious, regional, selfish and class proclivities then there is a problem,” he said.