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‘Nigeria needs roadmap to progress, merchants of hope’

•As CVL honours Jakande, Idika Kalu @77

BY CHARLES KUMOLU

A former presidential candidate, Prof Pat Utomi has said that for the promise offered by Nigeria at independence to be realised, the country must draw lessons from the leadership approach of a former Lagos State Governor, Alhaji Lateef Jakande and a two-time Finance Minister, Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu.

He also said that the various public policy challenges in the country would remain unresolved until key reforms were carried out and implemented by the appropriate authority.

Relying on his argument that public service had failed to be a catalyser of development in Nigeria, he queried why the growths in the last few years had resulted in a recession.

Prof. Pat Utomi
Prof. Pat Utomi

Utomi, who said these yesterday in Lagos at colloquium convened by the Centre For Values in Leadership, CVL, to celebrate the 77 years birthday of Jakande and Kalu, said the nation currently needs a road map to progress and merchants of hope.

Speaking on the theme: Public Life and Reforming the Economy and Society, said: ‘’This edition of the LWT tribute colloquium series focuses on how the trends in governance have impacted performance outcomes and the quality of lives of citizens in Nigeria.

What factors and forces affected why Nigeria exuded hope at the dawn of independence long before oil revenues injected resources that could have been significant savings for investments and growth but brought a slow down. In this season of this journey, Alhaji Lateef Jakande is remarkable to watch from many angles. In later life as governor of Lagos State, he deployed methods quite unusual.

He provides more evidence of personal commitment to service. The lessons from his unconventional but impactful ways in dealing with education at a time of significant population growth constitute part of a germane legacy.

‘’In pairing him with an intellectual and policy activist, who has had tours at federal cabinet level, we are gifted with a platform to discuss public life and necessary reforms Nigeria must implement if it is to claim the promise of independence and the dream of its founding fathers.”


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