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Revisiting the Nation's Lost Foundations

Published April 5th, 2017

Going through history, it stands obvious that the nation's founding fathers laid solid foundation for the country to stand and also launch to higher levels of growth and development. Looking at the present state of the nation, one can categorically say that the nation could have achieved a measurable development considering the solid and very honest foundations laid by our founding fathers. Until the advent of oil and gas sector in the early 70’s, agriculture was the mainstay of the Nigerian economy. However, due to overdependence on oil as the major foreign exchange earner for national development, the agricultural sector suffered serious neglect as the country felt comfortable operating a one-commodity economy.


Taking a retrospective look into the nation's great foundation on independence and in the 60's before the civil war and up to early 70's, Nigeria operated a robust economy and there was efficient transport system. Efficient railway system provided easy, safe and reliable facilities for movement of passengers as well as goods and economic products from North to South and vice versa. This made the road as a means of transport less congested and consequently more durable. Today, heavy trucks of all types ply and destroy roads while commuters travel at great risk to their lives. What the nation boasts of now in its transport system is the multiplicity of motor bikes with their attendant problem of frequent accident and robbery as well as the introduction of tricycles (generally called Keke) as a popular invention in the transport sector.

In those good old days, there were functional industries and commercial establishments which provided the needed commodities and gainful employment. The dreams of the then political leaders were for commerce and industry to continue flourishing. But regrettably, the solid foundations laid in this regard have been destroyed without any hope of reinstating the good old days.

Also, there was steady power generation and supply in the days of Electricity Cooperation of Nigeria (ECN). The ECN metamorphosed into National Electric Power Authority (NEPA), Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) and now Electricity Distribution Companies (EDCs), yet darkness has remained the order of the day, despite the earlier solid foundations laid in this sector to avert darkness. This has expectedly led to the exit of some companies who depended on power supply for constant production, while the ones that stayed back produces at a high cost resulting in the increased price of goods produced by these companies.

Before Nigeria took its light to a one-commodity economy, solid minerals received reasonable attention in addition to agriculture. Nigeria used to be world's leading producer of columbite while tin, coal, gold, iron, limestone and other solid mineral resources abound. In spite of the nation's rich oil resources, the importation of petroleum products that has been on the increase as successive governments have failed to maintain the refineries or increase their refining capacities to meet the ever growing local demands.

Regrettably today too, Nigeria cannot boast of functional water boards,health education and other effective, efficient and functional social infrastructure. Still worrisome is the rampaging forces of insurgence, militants, kidnappers and herdsmen who emback in all manner of destruction of lives and properties of innocent citizens thereby destroying the peace of the nation.

Indeed, the founding fathers laid a foundation that envisaged a nation where in spite of ethnic and religious differences, peace and brotherhood would continue to reign as captured in our first national anthem at independence.It is therefore necessary that every Nigerian, both the leaders and the led to soberly reflect on Nigeria's present situation and think towards making personal and collective contributions devoid of negative criticisms that would restore the country to her lost glory as laid down by the founding fathers.

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