National identity, corruption, inequality, poverty and insecurity have been identified as major threats that could push Nigeria into deeper problems and undermine its corporate existence as a country.
This was the opinion that came out from a brainstorming session organised by the Chattered Institute of Development and Social Studies (CIDSS) under the theme: “Sustanable Growth and Development as Panacea to Problems of Social Disconnect,” to identify, discuss and proffer solutions to the reasons Nigeria was experiencing slow pace of development.
The session was chaired by former Vice Chancellor Landmark University, Omuaran, and Dean of Social Sciences, Federal University, Lokoja, Prof. Mathew Rotimi Ajayi.
The institute stated that Nigerian leaders used the issue of tribe and religion to cause national identity problem and division among the country’s citizens to satisfy their selfish end. They also frowned at policies of government which put premium on where a citizen comes from before offering him appointment at the expense of merit, which should be the focal point.
Citing United States as an example, the scholars urged Nigerians to embrace patriotism and selflessness by putting Nigeria first in all they do rather than promoting tribe and religion
The institute also described corruption as anything that was not done rightly, stressing that corruption starts from the little things people failed to do and not necessarily financial misappropriation and embezzlement. “While proffering stiffer punishment for those found culpable, the institute believes that everybody is capable of fighting corruption no matter how small, and therefore said the issue must not be left in the hands of government alone.”
The institute also blamed the high rate of poverty in the country to non-continuity of programmes and policies of previous governments by the incumbent governments due to policy summersault
It stated that the high levels of inequality and insecurity in the country would make development difficult and urged the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to curb the incessant killings and destruction of property across the country.
The institute also declared that it would always be ready to partner with the federal government or any tier of government to provide solutions to challenges of governance.
The institute also presented a 420 paged book written by over 30 scholars and professionals entitled “Socio-Economic Development and Environmental Sustainability in Nigeria.”
Earlier, in his key note address, the chairman Board of Trustees of the Institute, Pastor Shae Bebeyi, said no nation could experience sustainable growth and development where there is a departure, dislocation or disconnect from the social order, adding that when the economy of a nation is stable there would be growth.
He also said that cultural values and orientation were critical factors that could engender sustainable growth in Nigeria.
The erudite scholar also pointed out that education either formal or informal must be given its deserved priority and that government should make conscious efforts to bring technical education to the door steps of its citizenry.
Bebeyi also said that sustainable growth and development would be possible in Nigeria if conscious efforts were made to encourage social and economic development, adding that both could reduce poverty and incessant killings in the country.
Some professionals that were conferred with the prestigious Institute’s Fellowship Awards include Omotola Olutayo Olukoya, Kwardem Manji Danjuma, Shaibu Idenyi Emmanuel, Oluyori Segun, Ashmuke N Gladys and Moses Sule. Others were Aga Terso and Oloniruha John Akintola.
Three new members, namely Shae Bebeyi Daniel, Abuh Emmanuel Okoh and Choji Vincent, were also inducted.
Eminent Nigerians that we’re honoured at the ceremony include the former Governor of Gombe State, Dr. Hassan Ibrahim Dankwambo. He was honoured with the 2018 National Leadership and Development Expert Award ; the Assistant Inspector General of Police, Zone 9, Abia State, Wilson Inalegwu, who was given the Integrity Award and a legal luminary , Hon. Pwajok Gyang Edward (SAN), who was also given an Award of Excellence.
Others were Dr. John Gabriel of Mallo Engineering services LTD, who received an award of Excellence in Oil and Water Services; Hon. David Ombugado, Rural Development and Community Poverty Alleviation Award ; Prof Suleiman Elias Bogoro, Human and Infrastructural Development Award.
Dr. Segun Oluyori also went home with Award of Proficiency in Asset Management while a notable technocrat at the Federal Capital Territory, Sir Johnson Abiodun Jimoh, received an award for his magnanimity and kind heartedness.
Speaking after he received the award, Inalegwu said it was a good thing to be identified out of multitude of people for such recognition, especially as a police officer in Nigerian society.
He urged Nigerians to see the police as their friends and partners in progress rather than as an enemy because of their patriotic duty of protecting the citizens’ lives and properties and not minding what dangers lay ahead of them.
He dedicated the award to Nigeria Police and said that it would spur him to continue to do his best for the upliftment of his father land. He called on all Nigerians to shun any form of corruption.
In the same vein, Jimoh said he was surprised that the little he was doing to help the underprivileged, especially orphans and widows in the society, was recognized and appreciated.
Jimoh revealed that he made a vow as a little boy from a humble family who knew what poverty could wreak in a life of a man that when he grew up he would render selfless services to whoever comes his way no matter the tribe or religion.
He, therefore, said he dedicated the award “to the poor masses of Nigeria who have no hope of where the next meal will come”