Former Nigerian President, Olusegun Obasanjo, revealed the impression of some world leaders like Bill Clinton about President Muhammadu Buhari.
Obasanjo, while speaking to some reporters at his Abeokuta home yesterday, noted that despite Nigeria’s “mistakes and missteps,” it is not faring badly at 55 as a country.
He said: “I heard some of the comments of those he (Buhari) met; the comment that probably will not come back to him. He met Clinton for almost one hour and President Clinton, when I joined him for his global initiative talked to me about the impression of our President, it was favourable.
“Gordon Brown and I met him and we talked about issues. The few other leaders who met him gave me their impression and his debut so to say, it has been good. I think we are at the table, what they use to say that Nigeria is not at the table, now we are present at the table.”
He said Nigerians should be willing to learn from past mistakes while core national values should also not be eroded to enable the real growth and progress become manifest.
He noted that Nigeria was now well positioned with the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari for both recognition and active participation in global politics in a manner that would likely elicit positive attention from the international community.
According to Obasanjo, feelers from the world leaders and statemen during the recent UN summit showed that President Muhammadu Buhari did not only have a good outing there, but also helped to place Nigeria at a strategic position for global politics.
He identified youth unemployment, education, security, justice, the economy among others as areas the country should not joke with particularly corruption, saying it has the capacity to destroy everything noble about Nigeria.
Obsanjo said: “Fifty five years in the life of a nation is comparatively young, growing and when you look at the life and history of those that you may call settled societies or reasonably matured countries, we are not doing too badly.
“They have had missteps just as we are having missteps, they have made mistakes and most of them have learnt from their mistakes, they have been dynamic in the way they have progressed and I believe that we are doing the same thing.
“What is important is that certain cardinal pinches, cardinal features of our national live, values, should not be eroded. And then we should also be willing to learn from out mistakes.
“The President in his statement said Nigeria has the marks in making the potentialities of a great nation is just question of actualising our potentialities and that will require all hands on deck; men, women, muslims, christians, young and old, irrespective of our location, our tribe, our social standing, Nigeria needs all hands on deck.
“And we must also realise important issues that we must not play with, we must not play with the issue of education, we must not play with the issue of health for our people.
“We must not play with the issue of employment for our teeming population particularly for our youths, we must not play with the issue of economy, we must not play with the issue of security, peace and justice. Justice and peace go hand in hand, we can’t have injustice and expect peace to reign supreme.”
Culled from The Nation