Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Saturday, said despite the enormous potentials the country is endowed with, Nigeria lacks good leadership to administer them.
Speaking in Abeokuta during the final of Africa Region Inter-collegiate Debate on Human Security Africa, a debate organised by Centre for Human Security (CHS), an arm of the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library, Obasanjo identified lack of quality leadership, among other factors, as major hindrances to development in Nigeria as well as other African countries, lamented the lack of leadership that could harness the resources to the point of noticeable development.
The occasion featured universities and secondary school students from Nigeria and other African countries who participated in a debate as part of the activities marking Obasanjo’s 76th birthday.
Obasanjo lamented the lack of good leaders in the country, stressing that leadership in any country was very important to development and growth.
“On the topic you have chosen for this debate, ‘Human Security in Africa’, whether it is a myth or reality, threat to human security, high economic growth, whether it is flash in the pan or sustainable, it all comes to one major thing and that one major thing is leadership. Very soon, I do hope that we’ll bring leadership in all dimensions and in all ramifications.
“I realise that we have many Nigerians and there are not many good leaders in Nigeria. Whatever is the reason, it is something we have to tackle because we cannot continue the way it is.
“That brings me to the hope and the bright future that I see in what Profs. Akin Mabogunje and Peter Okebukola are putting together (the debate).
“It’s to try and prepare African youths, boys and girls, together that future belongs to you youths.
“Nobody will help Africa, nobody can help Africa and that is the truth. If we expect others from outside to come and help us, it is a second class help.
“What do I see for the future? We have caliber of women, men, young and old that Africa needs to put itself up and to make its voice heard in the world today and tomorrow.
“Alfred Mills explains in his book, ‘Why Africa is poor’ but it’s a choice, a choice that our leaders have made.
“But here watching you (students) at the college level and university level. I believe that the materials are there.”
The former president expressed how shocked he was when Alhaji Aliko Dangote told him that six Ph.D holders and 600 master degree holders were among applicants for truck drivers in his company.
He stated that the issue boils down to the problems of job creation, wealth creation, among others.