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Leadership crisis in nigeria

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  • Leadership crisis in nigeria

    Leadership Crisis in Nigeria and the Search for Transformational Leadership:
    Problems and Prospects

    It is suffice to say that the major problem facing the development of the Nigerian state is the crisis of leadership. Politicians, scholars, students, social critics, labour leaders and seasoned bureaucrats, even clergymen have consistently attributed it to be the major problem facing nation-building, integration and national development. An analysis of the plethora of leaders on Nigeria’s political landscape revealed selfish, mediocre, tribal leaders and opportunistic small minded people masquerading as leaders. From TafawaBalewa to Obasanjo, the crisis of leadership remains the same. Absence of pragmatic charismatic and selfless leadership to steer the ship of the nation remains a mirage. Chinua Achebe in his popular book “The Trouble With Nigeria” forthrightly indicts Nigeria’s political leadership and fails to see one shining act of bold selfless leadership at the top such unambiguous refusal to corrupt or tolerate corruption at the formation of authority which will radiate sensations of well being and pride through every nerve and artery of national life.

    Nigerians themselves rightly refuse to absolve their past leaders of historical and moral responsibility for the economic and political destruction they have wrought on the nation. The assessment of Arthur Nwankwo, a social critic aptly captures the character and impact of the past leaders on the socio-economic and political development of Nigeria. He began that with an analysis of coercive imposition of colonial structure, which by birth to neo-colonial institutions threw up ‘an enfooled generation of leaders’ (Nwankwo 1989: 144). Nwankwo captures the administrations of past leaders thus;

    AlhajiTafawaBalewa and his cabinet who confused their ignorance of what was involved in the smooth operation of the imposed institution simply behaved as amateur, sought ideas from their erstwhile colonialist... and made Nigeria a vital consistency of the world imperialist system which consistituted the most binding restraints on development. He lacked the capacity to chart a progressive course for national development because of lack of consciousness of development. His knack of kow towing the imperialist line of action increases the vulnerabity of the entire polity to external manipulation; he was unable to engender internal stability which eventually consumed his gullibity and incompetence (restricted and based on Nwankwo’s opinion).

    J.J.U Aguiyi-Ironsi could not seize an opportunity afforded by the 15th January, 1966 coup to reset Nigeria on a progressive and development mapping. Brought up under the most passive and apolitical circumstances of colonialist’s military institution, he neither understood the meaning of politics in general nor was he able to diagnose the specialties of the Nigerian political system whose leadership was placed on his shoulders. He was neither confused nor misled; he was simply ignorant and naïve. His verbalist approach to power politics, and his epiphenomenal formula for Nigeria unity provoked the sordid massacres of 1967; which eventually led to the 30 months civil war (Nwankwo).

    General Gowon’s rhetoric about keeping Nigeria one and united, and creating a post civil war just and egalitarian society through the lackeyed principles of reconciliation, rehabilitation and reconstruction, sounded more like a frivolous song of general amnesia, especially when listened to against the background stench of crimes committed during the civil war. As the then Head of State, General Gowon was apparently the only Head of Government anywhere in the world who had so much money that he did not know what to do with it. The transient national affluence occasioned by the innocent but unsolicited upsurge of mineral resources cast a spell of short-sightedness over Gowon and his reactionary advisers. They mistook the transient flow of petroleum for a permanent future of the Nigerian economy and without conducting a critical analysis of the international market forces which determine the cost of petroleum and its relevance place to national development. It is difficult to imagine how history can ever absolve the Gowon regime for its poor foresight; he was responsible for not seizing the greatest opportunity to stand the nation on a sound footing of development. It was during his era that super-powerful secretaries supervised the native elites predation of the economy through contract awards and the institution of kickbacks. While foreign private investors besiege the nation in an organized loot and plunder, with the collaboration of the native elites. The oil boom of his era was aptly described as oil doom for the nation (Nwankwo).

  • #2
    good write-up let us continue to talk about this till something is done...we need good leaders!

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