4th August, 2021
Lagos State Deputy Governor, Dr. Kadri Obafemi Hamzat has called on non-state institutions, others to come together with the government to free the nation.
Hamzat called on non-state institutions especially civil societies, academia, social organizations to come together with the government to free the nation from her current state of paralysis and march towards a future that potentially awaits her.
The Deputy Governor made this call on Tuesday at a lecture organized to mark the 72nd Anniversary of the Lagos Country Club, Ikeja held at the Club premises in GRA, Ikeja.
Hamzat speaking on the topic, “The Imperative of Good Governance: The Role on Non-State Actors” stated that it behooves Nigerians to come together to build a virile nation where the extensive natural resources are deployed to provide general happiness and an opportunity for citizens to excel in their individual pursuits.”
The deputy governor added that it should be the desire of “all Nigerians to have a nation where her citizens can fulfil their potentials. A nation with values and ethos around which her people can proudly assemble and take their positions in the national scheme of things.”
He, therefore, stressed the need to surmount the mirage of challenges bedevilling the country which include the inability of state actors to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, poverty, corruption and insecurity as the state is at war with its citizens as there are extensive dissents among tribes.
“Today, there is a nation-state called Nigeria but there are very limited number of Nigerians. Put succinctly, we have not built a nation of Nigeria. So, long as this state of things subsist, we cannot begin to think of good governance”
To achieve this, Hamzat stated the country must extend its engagement to non-state actors like social clubs which offers opportunities for building consensus and promoting such values that can get the nation to the desired destination.
Citing some countries where this has taken place, he added that there has been continued growth in the number and activities of non-state actors globally because of the compelling complementary roles they play in impacting governance.
He said, “It is my position that we must begin to move away from “Big government” concepts towards “small government” and freeing up space for the entrepreneurial capacity of the people to take off.”
The deputy governor further disclosed that the existence of social clubs like the Lagos Country Club, with its diverse membership, portends great potentials that can be welded in ensuring that our national discourse can be more meaningful adding that as opinion moulders and by maintaining a code of ethics, citizens can begin to see emerging, the nation of their dreams.
While accepting that corruption plays a role in the state of things, Dr. Hamzat urged Nigerians to also celebrate notable achievements rather than wear the toga of our failings. He noted that a young Nigerian from a public school had excelled at a competition among students of 60 schools across the world but there was no mention of it in our media. This, he said, is not good enough.
Earlier in his welcome address, President of the Lagos Country Club, Arc. Funmi Bamkole stressed that the relevance of the club cannot be over-emphasized as they exist to co-create good governance noting that democracy, good governance and modernity cannot be imported or imposed from outside the country.
According to him, the club owes its members, immediate environment and the country a duty to add value, not only on recreational activities but on collective governance of the society.
Arc. Bamkole noted that good governance is the pathway to the future we all want and it offers a framework to generate economic growth, achieve social justice, exercise environmental stewardship and strengthen governance.
He said, “We recognize the fact that Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa. If Nigeria succeeds at democratic governance, it will be an anchor for all West Africa and indeed the entire continent. Africa needs a strong Nigeria.