The Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodimma, has expressed optimism about the possibility of a new Nigeria where citizens enjoy unfettered freedom to realize their potential, live together harmoniously, and respect each other as brothers and sisters.
Governor Uzodimma made these remarks during a book presentation titled “The Making of Modern Nigeria – from pre-colonial era till date,” hosted by Sun Publishing Limited, the publisher of Sun Daily, in Abuja.
Represented by his deputy, Prof. Placid Njoku, the governor acknowledged the historical efforts made by various administrations to build a united Nigeria, from General Aguiyi Ironsi in 1966 to former President Goodluck Jonathan in 2014. However, he noted that the desired results had not yet been achieved, attributing this to a lack of political will to address fundamental issues.
“The main impediment or challenge of nation-building in Nigeria can be said to be the political will to do the needful,” Governor Uzodimma stated emphatically. “The needful is quite clear from where I stand: the peoples of Nigeria, as equal entities, should have more power devolved to them as federating units. This will make the struggle for power at the center less combative and inflammable.”
Governor Uzodimma advocated for a true federalism that would create a level playing field for all ethnic nationalities in Nigeria, ensuring justice and equity. He urged urgent discussions in this direction, proposing either another national conference or the adoption of the recommendations of the 2014 National Conference as a starting point.
He further emphasized the need for a new Nigeria where different segments have control over their resources for the benefit of all citizens, suggesting that Nigeria should adapt the formula to suit its unique circumstances.
Governor Uzodimma underscored the importance of good governance in the immediate effort to build the Nigeria citizens dream of. He identified good governance as a critical factor in eradicating poverty and unemployment, which he described as twin challenges that had deeply affected the nation’s progress.
In this regard, he commended President Bola Tinubu for his efforts in implementing well-thought-out policies that address poverty and unemployment. He expressed confidence that these initiatives would contribute significantly to resolving these pressing issues.
Regarding the book titled “The Making of Modern Nigeria: from the Pre-Colonial Era to Date,” Governor Uzodimma praised it as a bold and timely attempt to chronicle Nigeria’s history and evolution as a nation. He pointed out that Nigeria’s history had not been adequately documented for posterity, and valuable aspects of its journey had not been fully captured.
“I have no doubt that this new book would be a valuable addition to the subject of our checkered history as a young and developing nation,” Governor Uzodimma concluded. “Without a doubt, the book will help to keep the subject of our nationhood on the front burner.”