By Richard Thomas, Ibadan
Labour Unionist, Comrade Ogundiran Olusola has blamed Nigeria’s backwardness since its Independence on lack of focus and poor leadership.
The Chairman, Oyo State Council of Trade Union Congress (TUC) gave the submission during an interview with WESTERN POST in Ibadan in the wake of the 59th Independence anniversary of Nigeria.
According to him, the nation which is supposed to be kicking and running at 59-year is crawling and gasping for breath while the people are begging for bread and survival.
“The economy vis a vis the welfare of the teeming populace and the living standard is nothing to write home about. Nigeria at 59, the economy is at 10 years, and the living standard of the people at 10 years too.
“The economy may look healthy on paper, but the standard of an average Nigeria is nothing to write home about. Nigeria’s currency is as valueless as anything compared to nations like Ghana Rwanda and others.”
Comrade Ogundiran who is also the chairman public service Joint Negotiating Council (JNC) decried the leadership system of the country, noting that the nation’s economy vis a vis the currency no longer measure up to what it used to be in the past especially when the naira was at per with the United Kingdom Pound Sterling.
Speaking on the way forward, Comrade Ogundiran said Nigeria needs to go back to the basis in order to get things right.
“Nigeria is a country that is blessed with human and natural resources, we are primary raw material producers who have all it takes to be sufficient economically. I don’t know what has been hindering us from turning these raw materials into finished products,” he queried.
He noted that “Why can’t we add value to what God has given us, why can’t we make use of our population like China, Brazil and other countries who are doing well today.
“Nigeria is the most populous black nation in Africa, but the population is a disadvantage to it. We cannot claim to be at the same level as countries we both had independence at the same time.”
Comrade Ogundiran said it is worrisome that poor leadership has given birth to bad leadership in the country adding that food cannot be produced in this country with the poor road network and where leaders think of themselves alone.
“It is a pity that we find ourselves in this entity called Nigeria where those producing the wealth are paid next to nothing but the leaders who do nothing earn humongous pay. This is worrisome,” he added.
He said the country will survive if we have good leadership who can harness the nation’s God given resources and channel it for the growth and development of the people.
He advised Nigerian workers not loose hope but pray God for good leaders who will help to put the country on the right track.