Nigerians In Diaspora Organisation, NIDO, says Nigeria has a lot to celebrate since attaining 59 years of independence and have had many achievements both institutional and individual.
This was contained in a press release issued and signed by the President of the Ghana Chapter of NIDO, Kaycey Ogbonna in Accra.
The statement said looking back at 59 years of nationhood, Nigerians can remember the success story of great men like Herbert Macaulay, Chinua Achebe, Mallam Aminu Kano and Prof. Chike Obi.
It said as a nation, they can look back at their achievements in education saying; Nigerian universities were the first choice for many Africans and even non-Africans.
The statement further said their contribution to continental politics and freedom fight; Rhodisia, now Zimbabwe, enjoyed financial and logistics support from the Government of Nigeria.
It added that Nigerian involvement in South Africa’s fight for independence is unequalled which It earned them many political enemies in the international community.
The statement also pointed out that is a feat that would taint the image of Nigeria for a long time-bad press because they were the voice of the (then) voiceless.
The statement also dare say the Nigerian military lost more soldiers fighting for African nations than they did during the Nigerian civil war adding they were a threat to many super powers.
It says Nigeria is richer now with abundant human resource, the energy of an average Nigerian is intimidating and their zeal infectious.
The statement further noted that while they look back at the many achievements Nigerian have had over the years saying; this year’s Independence Day event should not be a celebration but a season for sober reflection and It should be a time for solemn assembly.
It stated that over the past 10 years, Boko Haram, banditry and other forms of insurgency have changed the narrative of Nigeria and Nigerians.
The statement said a great nation that has rescued many nations from insurgency and wars seems helpless.
The statement noted that Nigerian economy is in urgent need of diversification adding that; as a people, therefore, they need re-orientation to enable them love one another more and benefit from our cultural diversity, particularly with the case of rising infamy.
It stated that the story is not different in the diaspora. There seems to be a growing determination to clamp down on Nigerians and tag all Nigerians as criminals.
The statement pointed out that Nigerians are not criminals. Investment of Nigerian businesses across nations of the world runs into billions of dollars.
It stated that their input in economies of Africa helps to sustain growth and development in these nations, yet they are tagged as criminals.
It notes that In Africa, where many nations are tagged as under-developed, Nigerians are key players in what is called the pedestrian economy.
It further said there is need for introspection and they need to look inward and identify the motivation behind this clampind down on Nigerians in certain quarters.
“So much falsehood is peddled about Nigerians daily. Reports of Nigerians committing crime abound and when such Nigerians are vindicated, there is no report to correct the bad impression about Nigerians from the same media houses. There is the need for a new narrative”.
“As the adage goes: Until the lion gets a writer, the tale of the hunter and the lion will always favour the hunter.”
“It is time for Nigerians to tell their own stories. It is time for us to live right. It is time for Nigerians in the diaspora to re-inject their funds back home. It is time for us to grow our economy. Government alone cannot do this.
The statement said rising insecurity cannot be solved if citizens do not divulge information to the security agencies and citizens will not divulge information if there is no trust in the security apparatus of Nigeria.
“Nigeria is a great nation. And we are a great people. In this independence celebration, I encourage Nigerians in the diaspora, particularly in Ghana to remain law-abiding and shun provocation because we know that the government of Ghana is not against foreign investors; it is not against Nigerians”.
“By constantly engaging the media, we know that the bad press in Ghana will stop or at worst reduce”.
“In this occasion of Independence Day Anniversary, we would like to thank the Editor and Staff of Chronicle newspaper who followed up with a publication that vindicated the Nigerian that was accused of kidnapping in a suburb of Accra. He had been beaten and the name of Nigeria was once again soiled. But we appreciate you for giving the story the same prominence on the front page of your September 11, edition”.
“To our Ghanaian host, Osagyefo Dr. Nkrumah, JB Danquah, Dr Nnamdi Azikwe, Tafawa Balewa and many more African liberation heroes from both countries developed a bond that must not be broken. No wonder our political history is very similar. Both countries lost sitting Presidents about the same time and their successors each served for term losing to Presidents who are from the same generation and age with similar policies.
To us, our bond is more spiritual than natural”.
“In Nigeria, every child grows up with the information that Ghana is a sister nation, so we have a soft spot for Ghana and Ghanaians. Nigerians do not see themselves as foreigners here because we know we are home. When we talk about Ghana-Nigeria, we do not talk about friendship, we talk about brotherliness, love and passion. These are beliefs that have kept both countries united for over 60 years. These are values we promise to protect and not lose in our generation”.
By: Paul Mamattah