We politicians have failed the masses says David Mark
In a surprisingly candid assessment of the state of Nigeria, the country’s Senate on Thursday gave their assessment of the nation 53 years after independence, asking political leaders to search their souls just as the Upper Legislative Chamber urged them to shun greed and selfishness.
Adopting a motion by Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma Egba (SAN) and 10 other senators, the chamber lamented that Nigeria had retrogressed from being a producing and exporting nation at independence in 1960 to her present status of a consuming nation.
Senate President David Mark asked rhetorically whether Nigeria still stands in brotherhood as it did at independence. He said it is the ordinary Nigerians who deserved to be congratulated for exhibiting so much patience, amid the frustration occasioned by maladministration and mis-governance.
He said: “We are genuinely worried about our country; across political, religious and ethnic boundaries, we’re are truly worried because some key aspects of our values and tradition have been lost. In the old national anthem, we said ‘in brotherhood we stand.’
“Do we still stand in brotherhood today? We used to be our brothers’ keepers. Are we still our brothers’ keepers? The answer definitely is no. Instead, we do those things that hurt others now.
“We need to look inwards and begin to search our minds. The ball certainly is in our court as leaders to do what we should do to reverse the trend. We must shelve the attitude of seeking power at all costs. We do not need to get desperate about getting to the top. At any level we are, we must be ready to contribute our quotas.
” We have so much human resources in this country but we are losing them because everybody has gone out of the country to seek greener pastures. We must do something to get them back” he stated.
Introducing the motion earlier, Ndoma-Egba said Nigeria deserved congratulations for surviving series of challenges that bedevilled her right from her pre-independence days through the civil war period to the long period of military rule and yet, remained a united country. “Our democracy has moved from episodes to an enduring, unbroken democracy of 14 years,” he said.
Senator Solomon Ita Enang (Akwa Ibom) deplored a situation where over six million Nigerians have applied for few openings at the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS).
He noted that it was too bad that Nigeria had not done well in all indices of development. Enang who did not disclose the exact figure of the vacancies, lamented that Nigeria could not be said to be truly independent when the country’s teeming unemployed graduates struggle to fill very limited slots.
“We need to find out the percentage of graduate unemployment. More than six million have already applied for immigration positions for few hundred openings. Let there be employment for our graduates in this country,” he said.