Sixty years of the existence of any country is indeed worth celebrating. As a country, we have come a long way from under the British colonial rule to emerge as a nation to recon with, not only in the continent, but globally, despite issues we have had to contend with.
We have survived and remained one nation despite the civil war that could have led to the dismemberment of the country. Years of military regimes denied us the opportunity of having uninterrupted democratic government, but we have since returned to civilian administration with the opportunity to elect our political office holders at all levels.
Despite the various crisis the country have experienced, including ethnic and religious clashes, agitations for breakup, calls for restructuring, and years of lack of good governance, we have continued to trudge on and have every reason to celebrate that we still have a country called Nigeria.
But for the COVID-19 Pandemic which still necessitates social distancing and other protocols, there would have been nothing wrong for any reasonable celebration to mark the Diamond anniversary.
Agreed that we should have developed beyond the level we are now and achieved more than we have, given the high expectations at independence, we still have reasons to be grateful that we have a chance to hopefully get our acts right and become the truly giant of Africa we should be and a force to recon with in the comity of nations.
I am not sure what the eleven months modest commemoration activities announced by the Secretary of the Federal Government, Boss Mustapha will involve, but whatever it is, it should not be any unnecessary jamboree that we make us miss the essence of an occasion like this that should be for real sober reflection and reawakening to make up for our lost opportunities.
The choice of the logo and the theme for the celebration underscores our desire to make our country as great as it should really be.
The adopted logo for the celebration according to Mustapha is said to depict among other attributes, our togetherness; a country of over 200 million people, whose natural talents, grits, passion glitters like the precious diamond we are.
The fair green and dark green colours Mustapha adds should remind us of our warmth, welcoming spirit and love, as well as our abundant wealth inherent in our human capital and the richness of our land.
The attributes captured in the logo are true to the extent that, Nigerians despite the challenges they have had to contend with, have excelled in various spheres of endeavours wherever they found themselves, home and abroad.
We are a nation blessed with abundant human and natural resources which unfortunately have been mismanaged by successful governments. Despite the various actions and inactions of governments, many of which are divisive, Nigerians have done their best to remain patriotic.
Many Nigerians have good reasons to want to give up on the country, but they have kept faith and are hopeful of a truly united and better country we can all be proud of someday.
It’s not enough to adopt the theme “Together shall we be” for the anniversary, it will be necessary for the government at all levels to adopt necessary policies and take necessary actions needed for the goal to be attained.
As much as most Nigerians agree with our continued unity and will make whatever sacrifice that may be required, our togetherness should not be taken for granted.
Complaints of maginalisation, call for restructuring and every other thing that will be required to make everyone have trust in a united Nigeria where equity, truth and justice shall reign should be done by all concerned.