By; PATRICK TITUS, Uyo
The President and Chairman in Council of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations, (NIPR) Malam Mukhtar Zubairu Sirajo has suggested to the Federal Government to go beyond arrest of agitators in Nigeria to discreetly investigate reasons behind the agitations by the various ethnic groups in the country.
Arrest of such agitators in the nation, Malam Sirajo has reasoned, is likened to a mere ‘scratching of the nation’s problems on the surface’ rathan than solving the problems.
Speaking at the Dinner/Award Night as part of the activities to mark the 2021 Annual General Meeting/7th Chief O.W. Udoh’s Memorial Lecture in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State Capital last weekend, Sirajo further challenged the government of Nigeria to be more serious about addressing the nation’s woes.
Addressing the calls for disintegration, the NIPR President who pointed out poor leadership as one of the objects sitting on nation’s wheels of progress, posited that a good number of those who have had the opportunity to lead Nigeria had no business in governance.
His words “At the core of the problem of this country is poor leadership. if you fragment Nigeria into as many countries as you would wish to; whatever component that is not led in an appropriate manner is still going to suffer the same fate that we are suffering today.
“This country is well endowed in Africa. There is nothing that would form the basis for development that you cannot find in this country. The best ingredients for development are the people. But, we have not been fortunate with the kind of leadership that have been steering the ship of this country.
“A very significant percentage of the people that call themself leaders have no busines anywhere near leadership. If they were leaders in the true sense of the word, we would not have been in the quagmire that we are into today. The leaders have always led for their own class and that class is just a vein representive of what Nigeria is.
“If you take a look at our leaders when they come together to pursue their common interest, Niger Delta does not feature, North West does not feature, nothing else feature apart from that interest that they commonly unite to pursue. The only time you hear them complain is when one of them is surcharged. That is when they all retire to ethnic groups”.
Sirajo therefore, challenged Nigerians at the lower round to wake up, look at the leaders in the face and “tell them your time is up!”.
Having identified poor and lack of strategic communication as other factors affecting the growth of Nigeria, the Institute’s President/Chairman in Council disclosed the plan by NIPR to host a National Conference to tackle security and integration.
Highpoint of the Dinner/Memorial lecture with the theme “Strengthening Nigeria’s Unity Through Effective Strategic Communication: A Public Relations Approach was presentation of awards of excellence to some members of the chapter who have distinguished themselves in their various areas of endeavours.