Again, leading traditional rulers re-echo appeals for Nigerians to close ranks

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By Lucy Ogalue

Three leading traditional rulers on Thursday re-echoed their pleas for Nigerians to close ranks and build a formidable nation that would stand the test of time.

The traditional rulers spoke at a ceremony and book launch to mark the 80th birthday of King Edmund Daukoru, Mingi XII and Amanyanabo of Nembe Kingdom in Bayelsa.

Setting the tone, Daukoru urged Nigerians to continue to live in peace and unity, despite the glaring diversities among the ethnic nationalities that made up the country.

He said that Nigerians should use their diversities to build a united, indivisible nation, where every citizen should stand in solidarity with each other.

The octogenarian, who was also a former minister of state for petroleum resources, advised Nigerians to always show diligence in their duties to build a successful nation.

Also speaking, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, reiterated the importance of unity for Nigeria to stand as a nation.

Ogunwusi, however, told traditional rulers to preach unity to their people, describing peace and unity as key factors in fostering national growth and prosperity.

“Politicians come and go but we as traditional rulers remain in our kingdoms. It is our duty to encourage and maintain unity among our people.

“Nigeria is our country. We have no other country. So as traditional rulers, we should use events like this to send messages to our people and even to generations unborn.

He lauded Dakoru for his commitment to nation building, saying that the gathering was a way of showing appreciation to what the Bayelsa king had been doing to promote Nigeria’s growth.

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“We are very proud of you and we pray God to bless you and the works of your hands,’’ Ogunwusi said.

On his part, the Sultan of Sokoto, Alhaji Muhammad Abubakar III, commended traditional rulers for the roles they had been playing to foster unity in Nigeria.

Congratulating Daukoru on his birthday, Abubakar described him as a man of many parts, who had made remarkable contributions to the unity and progress of Nigeria.

Speaking on “The Imperative of Energy Security for Accelerated Rural Development’’, a former Economic Adviser to the President, Prof. Magnus Kpakol, called for deliberate effort by government to develop the resource-rich Niger Delta.

Kpakol, who is also the Executive Chairman of the Economic Growth and Development Centre, said that Nigeria would never be successful as a nation without the development of the Niger Delta.

“There must be an intentional approach to developing the Niger Delta for the entire nation to develop,” Kpakol stated, noting that human capital was key to economic development.

He argued that no country would become self-sufficient without human capital development, expressing his regrets that up to 600 million people in sub-Saharan Africa lacked access to electricity.

Kpakol said that to achieve rural electrification in Nigeria, the government should be intentional, purposeful and institutionalize human capital.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the event was attended by many traditional rulers, top government functionaries and captains of industry. (NAN)

Edited by Silas Nwoha


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