Nigeria's creation not a mistake, says Jonathan

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•Jonathan: Nigeria not a mistake

President Goodluck Jonathan said on Wednesday that the 1914 amalgamation of the Southern and Northern Protectorates which gave birth to the entity Nigeria was not a mistake.

In a national broadcast to mark the 100 years of nationhood, Jonathan said that the country was destined to live together as one big nation with unique diversity.

Jonathan assured that the challenges facing the country were transient and would be overcome for the country to take its rightful place in the globe.

“While our union may have been inspired by considerations external to our people; I have no doubt that we are destined by God Almighty to live together as one big nation, united in diversity.

•Jonathan: Nigeria not a mistake
•Jonathan: Nigeria not a mistake

“I consider myself specially privileged to lead our country into its second century of existence. As I speak with you today; I feel the full weight of our hundred-year history. But what I feel most is not frustration, it is not disillusionment.

“What I feel is great pride and great hope for a country that is bound to overcome the transient pains of the moment and eventually take its rightful place among the greatest nations on earth’’, he said.

Jonathan added that although the country was not yet at its destination, the citizens should, however, not lose sight of its achievements since 1914.

He encouraged the citizens to be inspired by the resilience of the past leaders to overcome the present challenges.

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The President emphasised that the country was a unique nation destined to be an authentic African success story.

“We are a nation of the future, not of the past and while we may have travelled for a century, we are not yet at our destination of greatness.

“The amalgamation of 1914 was only the first step in our national journey. Unification was followed by independence and democracy which have unleashed the enormous potentials of our people and laid the foundation for our nation’s greatness.

“In challenging times, it is easy to become pessimistic and cynical. But hope, when grounded in realism, enables and inspires progress.

“Therefore, as we celebrate our first century of nationhood and enter a second, we must not lose sight of all that we have achieved since 1914 in terms of nation-building, development and progress.’’

He expressed the belief that the future greatness of Nigeria was assured by the favourable tail winds of a resilient population, ecological diversity, rich natural resources and a national consciousness that rises above differences.

Jonathan reiterated that the unity of the country shall remain sacrosanct and non-negotiable