Fixing Nigeria, our collective duties-Lamid

Barrister Sola Lamid is a Lagos-based legal practitioner of over two decades in courts. His  chamber at Marina offers services to clients from different sectors. In this interview with, he speaks on his new project about future of Nigeria. Excerpts

I learnt you are putting something together titled ‘Who will fix Nigeria’, what informed the topic?

If you have followed me in the past few years, you would understand background to this topic. I have always created time to take a deep reflection on the state of our country with a view to seeking practicable solutions. But as much as I did, there always seemed to be an uncertain future. Despite that, I felt, as a lawyer who is trained to be determined to take bull by the horns, I shouldn’t back out. I think I have answered your question.

You have answered it partly but I need to know the specific push to settle for the topic.

Well, as we all approach another decisive general elections holding next years with all parties producing their candidates, I feel the topic is an important question which we should all ask ourselves before the elections finally come. By this time next year, a new government must have been inaugurated. So, who will fix Nigeria?

Okay, I am putting it back to you. Who do you have in mind among these aspirants?

The best answer to your question is that we first need to evaluate our past glory, our present predicaments and where are we going? Where we are going, which is our future is the thrust of the question but it cannot be treated in isolation of the past and present. Well, if we answer these questions sincerely, then we will be able to find the appropriate answer to our ailing nation and how to get to our destined great nation. We should ask if any of the presidential aspirants among the leading parties can diagnose these issues. Will any of them be our messiah? Is any of them able to confront the nation’ core issues? Would they just be ‘Red Carpets’ President as usual? One thing I was inspired to observe is that every succeeding government is always worse than the previous government, in terms of social welfare and security standard of living, inflation, unemployment and poverty.

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Can you be more explicit here?

Why not? Is it news to you? It is not hidden at all. The standard of living has been consistently falling, except if you want to pretend and feign ignorance. But as a media person, you ought to know even better. I observe that Nigerians always refer to our past glorious 70s.

Okay, who will fix Nigeria?

My simple answer is that it is our collective duties and obligations to fix the country. The entire burden and responsibility cannot be placed at the door steps of our leaders alone. It takes a lion’s heart president to confront the issues of population explosion, through regulated procreation, corruption, National Unity (including resources and revenue sharing , fiscal federalism, state police and devolution of powers and restructuring) poverty, bad mentality, indiscipline, entrepreneurship drive , social security and welfare, violation of tax law, market for our local industries , reversal of craze for imported goods to drive economic growth, ignorance and illiteracy among others.

Are you saying failure of most leaders on these issues accounts for their failure to achieve national prosperity?

That is exactly the point because they run away from the issues so that the issues don’t consume them. To them, these issues are monstrous to the extent that it may break up Nigeria. But the blunt truth is that resolution of them will lay a solid foundation for great nation. Our hopes of making a constitution to resolve them in the past have failed woefully. The president will rather choose to be Red Carpets ceremonial and enjoy the perks of the office and pass the issues and the baton continues.

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Can the impoverished and vulnerable masses play any role in fixing it as you have postulated?

Look, all we need to get it done is peoples’ support, understanding and sacrifice. Perhaps, you have a contrary view on this, you may share it, and it will be sent to the frontline presidential candidates. I have prepared my 22 pages analysis of the issues but will like to have your contributions. Please spare time to send your answer to because it is our collective responsibility as long as we don’t have another country to call ours.

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