SIR: Richard Nixon, a one-time American President once said: the formula for success for leadership has three elements: a great man; a great country and a great issue. These three tests of leadership are lacking in Nigeria.
This glaring manifested itself in the inability of political leaders most especially at federal level to better the lot of the masses. For any country to acquire a desired change, the need for sincerity in its leadership cannot be neglected. Without effective and exemplary political leadership which Nigeria project is lacking, political stability and democracy will be elusive.
Nigeria’s literary giant – Chinua Achebe (of the blessed memory) in his epic —
”The Trouble with Nigeria” said “the trouble with Nigeria is simply and squarely a failure of leadership. There is nothing wrong with the Nigeria character. There is nothing with the Nigeria land, climate and water or anything else. The Nigeria problem is the unwillingness or inability of its leaders to rise to the responsibility to a challenge of personal example, which is the hallmark of the leadership.”
Leadership is not a right. Instead, leadership is all about developing people and helping others reach their full potential. It’s about equipping others with the right tools and strategies to not only maximize the success of an organization but also the lives of individuals.
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The late General Murtala Muhammed said this much on his ascension to power: “Events of the past few years have indicated that despite our great human material resources, the government has been left to drift” why? Lack of exemplary leadership.
However, the true test of a leader is to lead right in the front and take responsibility any time things go wrong, but reverse is the case as Nigeria’s leader always blame their predecessor for their failure. Before the transition to civilian rule in 1999, the pan-Yoruba social-cultural group, Afenifere, blamed northerners for Nigeria failure, in response, the northern elders exonerated the region and blamed the military for the misrule.
It is saddening that after seven years in government, the Muhammadu Buhari administration still blames past leaders for its failure.
The question is: when will our leaders take responsibility for their failure and move on? More so, come 2023, Nigeria needs an effective leader that will provide clarity of purpose, motivate and guide the nation to realize its mission. We need a leader that will influence our behaviour.
We need a leader like that Egba generalissimo, Kunrunmi, who that after losing his four sons did not waver until the last battle.
- Peter Ojelabi,
Ogbomoso, Oyo State.