But comparatively speaking, those leaders, our founding fathers, were excellent: Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Sardauna of Sokoto, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Mallam Aminu Kano, J. S. Tarka. They were leaders who went into politics to serve and not to be served; to give, but not to take. They were leaders concerned with the welfare of the people; leaders who in spite of their political differences were at all times prepared to come together and unite and accommodate one another in the interest of the nation.
Indeed, as a result of their good leadership, there was a report in 1961 or 1962, which indicated that Nigeria with two other developing countries of the world would in 15 to 20 years join the industrialised countries of the world. The other two countries were India and Brazil.
India and Brazil have made it today or haven’t they? India is a nuclear power, and India is in the forefront in the field of computer technology. India manufactures planes, build ships, produces more medical doctors than any country in the world today. India had the same problems as Nigeria; the religious bigotry, so many differences, the second largest population in the world and yet they were able to overcome all the difficulties. They are where they are today because of the leadership.
Brazil has the finest agricultural programme in the world today. Brazil builds ships, manufactures planes, cars and all sorts of things. Incidentally, Brazil and Nigeria established their defence industry the same year. What is our defence industry in Kaduna doing?"
Credit: Chike F. Okolocha The Genius Orator – Ambassador (Alhaji) Yusuf Maitma Sule