By Gilbert Ekezie
General Superintendent of Holy Spirit Mission, Bishop Charles Ighele has described Nigeria, the acclaimed giant of Africa as a failed nation that needs rebuilding, reconciliation and total social re-engineering.
He stated this in Lagos when members of Association of Christian Correspondents of Nigeria (ACCoN) paid him a courtesy visit in commemoration of his 66th birthday anniversary.
Ighele explained without reservation that Nigeria has failed totally due to uneducated and uninformed leadership in the area of nation building, pointing out that the country’s political structure has been configured in such a way that no honest person can easily penetrate in the system.
He observed that there is a class war currently going on in the country, where the poor is fighting the rich, whom they believe, has eaten them enough. “Now, the poor are fighting their own battle in Nigeria. They believe it is their turn to eat the rich. The challenge is social inequality where children of average Nigerian cannot compete with other children in other countries of the world. The indices that make nations of the world great, are lacking in Nigeria. Nigeria is like a factory that is producing people who cannot do anything for themselves, so they end up in crime.”
Ighele expressed regret that Nigeria is not making headway because her elites know nothing about leadership due to the down turn of the educational sector. “Absolutely, nothing is working well. There is now a serious poverty in the land and Nigeria is being graded as the poorest in the world. It is on record that the total number of poor people in India and China, which have over One billion population each, is lower than the number of poor people in Nigeria. Inact, the stituation is appalling.
The Bishop said Nigeria lacks the indices that make nations of the world great, noting that if the leadership does the needful, the country can rise again. “Obviously, a failed nation can rise again. What the country needs now is total reconciliation and social re-enginering. Those who are knowledgeable in nation building, should be given the opportunity to serve as president.In as much as I want President Muhammed Buhari to succeed in office, I believe that he has reached the peak of his capacity. Then, what he should do, is to read and seek ways to increase his capacity. He still has about two years to spend in office, therefore, there is need for him to consult other nations that were like Nigeria, to know how they succeeded in bringing their nations out of their own problems. “
He advised the Federal Government to take urgent action to jettison body language, divisive tendencies and policies to ensure that peace reigns in the land. “Social institutions like banks, army, police and others should be made inclusive, rather than exclusive. No nation grows by the philosophy of ‘who you know, rather who is qualified.’ Also, the nation’s educational standard should be raised in line with that of other nations of the world, because it plays important roles in the life of citizens. I am of the view that all the out of school children in Nigeria should be found and brought back to school. What I mean is that all Primary school drop-outs, should be gathered for vocational training. Same goes to secondary school drop-outs, they should be assembled and equally given formal and vocational training at their own level.
Also University drop-outs and unemployed graduates , should be retrained to be employable or be on their own. Most importantly, exclusive social institutions, should be made inclusive, because it is impossible for any country where it requires that you should know someone on top, before you can get favour, to develop. In fact, if these areas are given attention, in the next 10 years, Nigeria will be stabilized. And, the problems of banditry, kidnapping , ethnic agitations, and other social malaise will reduce drastically.”
As the 2023 election, the cleric said President Muhammadu Buhari is ending up his tenure in a wrong side of history and should do something urgent to correct it. “There is need for equity and fairness. Until the issue of where you come from or religion do not matter again in Nigeria, we cannot get it right. I stand for equality and fairness. I am not against the president putting his own people in positions, but they must not occupy all the available positions, leaving some sections with none. An Igbo man will be happy to know that he will become the President of Nigeria one day. Just give them a sense of belonging, and things will be somehow under control. But a situation where a particular section of the country monopolizes the common wealth and appointments, one will not be surprised to witness most of the things we see in Nigeria today. More over, as 2023 election is coming up , we need educated and experienced nation builder, as a President. We cannot continue same way. This is the time to get it right. So, Nigerians should be committed to election to ensure that the right person emerges as president.’
Ighele informed that Coronavirus is real and called on Nigerians to make themselves available for the vaccines to avoid further contact and deaths. “COVID-19 is real and it has killed many. Many people are afraid to take the vaccines because there is conspiracy on it. But I think that is not true. If there is any conspiracy, there must be a whistle blower that will leak the secret to the public. So, I think, people should take the vaccine. Meanwhile, I and my wife have taken ours.”