Gov. Hope Uzodimma of Imo  says Nigeria is “not without hope”, in spite of its myriads of challenges, as the country marks the 62nd independence anniversary on Oct I.

Uzodimma said this on Sunday at the Maria Assumpta Catholic Cathedral Owerri during a special Church service to mark the 62nd Independence Anniversary of Nigeria.

The governor called for proactive measures to tackle the nation’s challenges, noting that identifying the cause of a problem was the first step in solving the problem.

He identified the challenges to include poor leadership, insecurity, poverty and unemployment, and called for concerted efforts by Nigerians to nip them in the bud.

 ” We must take time to study how countries overcame their challenges and deplore proactive approaches in confronting the challenges of our time.

 ” We must begin to do things differently, listen to the government of the day, find out if her story is good; if yes, embrace it for the interest of our state and the country at large because we have no other place to go.

 ” How many of us are interested in how Nigeria can be better, and if yes what have we done in that direction? All hands must be on deck, each of us should contribute his quota to make our country a better place to live, ” he said.

In his homily, the  Catholic Archbishop of Owerri Ecclesiastical Province, Most Rev.  Lucius Ugorji, thanked God for the numerous blessings He endowed Nigeria with as a nation as well as the talents and human endowments given to her leaders.

 He said that  the  Mass was not only to mark the 62nd independence anniversary of Nigeria, but also to  remember the founding fathers  who paid the supreme price to make Nigeria a nation.

Ugorji, therefore, called for a change of heart on the part of Nigerians, leaders and followers alike, to enable the country to move away from needless killings,  corruption, fraud, kidnapping and  selfishness, and embrace security of lives and property.

 ” We look forward to celebrating a  country where peace and unity will dominate the entire nation and the citizens will be happy.

 ” Nigeria is a country with great potential,  numerous human and mineral resources but the poor management of these resources has left the citizens  suffering.

 ” The independence anniversary affords us an opportunity to come together as a nation, recall the labours of our heroes past and work to see that their labours are not in vain” he said.

Wife of the governor, Barr. Chioma Uzodimma;  Deputy Governor, Prof. Placid Njoku; Speaker of the Imo House of Assembly, Mr Emeka Nduka and senior officials of the Imo Government attended the service. (NAN)

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