It was all smile in Minna, the Niger State capital at the weekend as former Head-of-State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar pledged to do all within his sphere of influence to assist the Social Democratic Party (SDP) presidential hopeful, Prince Adewole Adebayo achieve his Aso Rock ambition.
Abdulsalami said that with Adebayo’s ideology, youthfulness and vibrant ambition, Nigeria will be on the right path to greatness again.
Adebayo, a leading member of the Steering Committee of the National Consultative Front (NCF), was accompanied by former Minister of Youth and Sports, Solomon Dalung, ex-lawmaker who represented Anambra South, Senator Ugochukwu Uba, among others.
With the slogan HopeAgain2023, Adebayo is aiming to end the All Progressives Congress (APC) and People’s Democratic Party (PDP’s) duopoly at the helm of affairs in the country.
Welcoming the aspirations of the 50-year-old lawyer, Abdulsalami expressed delight that he is thinking of moving Nigeria forward.
He, however, submitted that Nigeria indeed needs the younger generation to take over from the older ones.
“I am so happy that not only you, other young people are showing interest in taking over the leadership of the nation,” Abdulsalami said.
“I am happy that you are thinking of moving Nigeria forward and I believe with your ideology, your youthfulness and vibrant ambition, Nigeria is on the right path to greatness again.
“Nigeria, with a population of over 200 million people is certainly a great country. I thank you once again for finding me fit for this visit and I shall do all that I can to assist in the success of your ambition”.
On his part, Adebayo told the ex-Head-of-State that he came to “Minna to seek your blessings and tap from your wisdom and expertise in democratic governance and love for fatherland because you willingly gave us democracy when leaders across Africa were holding on to power”.
He added “You had the opportunity to hold to power but your focus was to leave an enduring legacy. The Constitution we operate that makes Nigeria a democratic nation today, which is the 1999 Constitution, was signed by you and handed over to us as a country. You are the father of democracy in Nigeria”.
Assuring the former military ruler of his ability, commitment and zeal to build on the legacies of Nigeria’s heroes’ past, Adebayo said, “we need to have a template for you to show that we are Nigerians first before any other designations”.
To achieve that template, Prince Adebayo listed five key factors.
One is that the unity and continuity of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is more paramount to us than any other consideration. Two, that Nigeria is not a country where citizens should strive to be great individually but a nation where citizens want the country to be great. Adebayo said he would rather be an ordinary man from a great country tha a great man from a useless country.
Third, the labour of our heroes past should not just be a song but a continuous one, because the journey that the heroes started is not yet finished.
In addition, he said the world has become more globalised. So, because of the innovations going on all over the world, Nigeria needs to go global and compete favourably well with the world powers, Uthe .S, Russia, the U.K, China, France, etc.
Lastly, he said Nigeria should be built on the path where young people will see public service as more honourable, more useful and more enduring than the personal accumulation of wealth