Barely a week after the formation of a movement known as National Consultative Forum(NCF) by some prominent Nigerians, the former governor of Kaduna State, Balarabe Musa as well as Labour Party (LP) governorship candidate in the last election in Kwara State, Comrade Issa Aremu, have thrown thier weights behind the NCF, saying it is a welcome development.
Both Musa and Aremu spoke at a press conference on Sunday to register their support for the movement, believing that the brains behind its formation are capable of rescuing Nigeria from socio-political retrogression in due course.
For the former governor, “I, first of all, became aware of this group from the newspaper I read about a week or so ago. When I saw the names behind this movement, I became interested, and happy about it.
“In the second Republic, we, (nine governors) from different political parties formed similar movement where we constantly attacked negative tendencies of the state of the nation, and what should be done.
“We called ourselves Progressive Governors, calling and attending meetings to attack National Party of Nigeria (NPN), the then ruling party over the negative state of the nation.
“So I see NCF as a continuation of what we started in the second Republic. I hope they will do better than us. We will help the group to grow”.
On his own party, Aremu said, “The enthusiasm that trails this new national initiative on national building should not be lost. Many compatriots are joining daily and hourly. Even those reported to have not been “consulted” have welcome the new initiative .
“There is no doubt that National Consultative Front (NCF) is an idea whose time has come. Things are fast falling apart in Nigeria beyond what the late literary, Chinua Achebe documented about colonial Nigeria in the classic African story : Things Fall Apart and post-colonial Nigeria’s “The Trouble with Nigeria”.
The former governorship candidate said, “NCF is a new political paradigm to get things done in a new way to deliver the much needed public good to Nigerians. Therefore the facilitating Secretariat of the National Consultative Front (NCF) must intensify consultation with all to retain confidence.
“In the new political normal, we should not take each other for granted just as the Nigerians have been taken for a ride since 1999. However compatriots too should jettison the old idea of entitlement to be “consulted” on the task which we all agonize over daily: repositioning our dear Nation on the path of development, deepening democracy, political and electoral reforms and eradication of poverty. I was not “consulted” as such.
“But I wholeheartedly accept that I was rightly enlisted. Many compatriots have also called to complain why they are not enlisted and that they must be counted. I certainly don’t need “consultation”: “on a new political intervention for rescuing our dear country from the exploitative grip of a lacklustre leadership and the manipulation of a bickering, factionalised ruling political elites in Nigeria.
“On the contrary, I appreciate fellow compatriots and comrades who have not given up on Nigeria but willing to sacrifice and organize for a better Nigeria. We should stop grumbling but take some concrete actions. Let’s give meaning to the first stanza of the national anthem,: “Arise, O compatriots, Nigeria’s call obey, To serve our Fatherland, With love and strength and faith.”
“A list of the conveners and many others show that we are virtually products of functional independent Nigeria. There was a democratic country with focused political class.
“Despite their legitimate disagreements they found a common ground to resist British imperialism together with mass of people, students organized labour, peasants and women. There was once a country of inclusion, manufacturing value addition, beneficiation and prosperity. It’s time to give back to a country that has invested in our education and wellbeing.
“We must pass on to our children a country that works just as our parents out of nothing gave all to make us what we are. Godliness is in the details. All experiences are needed. As a member of 2014 national conference, I bear witness that there is strength in diversity of old and young, women and men, capital and labour, tongues and faiths and regions and states.
“Without loathing nor being romantic with the past, we must factor memory and history to build a modern Nigeria in a globalized world of technology and best governance practices”.