By Taye Obateru
Jos â€” Former PDP National Chairman, Chief Solomon Lar has urged the countryâ€™s leaders to reflect on the dreams of the founding fathers of Nigeria to enable them connect the past to the present and plot a greater future for the country.
He also called on government to concentrate on social justice, youth employment and welfare programmes for children and women as the country begins the journey to her golden jubilee independence anniversary.
Chief Lar in a statement to commemorate the 49th independence anniversary called on all Nigerians to work for the growth of Nigeria, expressing confidence that she would remain one united nation despite all odds.
â€œWe thank God for keeping Nigeria safe and intact. We have gone through many valleys and mountains in the process of nation building. What seems our losses, we can still regain if our leaders will cherish a sense of history, focus more on what binds us together, rather than create parochial issues that would divide the electorate,â€ he said.
The elder statesman who was in the First RepublicÂ House of Representatives from 1959 to 1966 recalled with nostalgia the dream of a greater country Nigerians had when she became independence in 1960, urging that the dreams should not be abandoned.
He said the then parliamentarians â€œworked as patriotic Nigerians without emphasis on our difference to see the mission accomplished. This came to reality when, just before the midnight of 30th September, 1960, we all gathered at the Lagos Race Course, awaiting the birth of an Independent, and an emancipated new nation called Nigeria.
â€œYouth employment, welfare programmes for children and women and enforcement of social justice, should be in the front burner of administration as we focus on the way forward. May the labours of our heroes past never be in vain,â€ he added.