Why Nigeria Is No Longer Giant Of Africa – Varsity Don

Professor Isaac Olawale Albert, Director of the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan (UI), declared that Nigeria has lost its status as the giant of Africa.

Albert, who is a Professor of African History, Peace and Conflict Studies at UI made the declaration at a public lecture to celebrate the 60th birthday of the Dean, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Lagos, Prof. Adelaja Odukoya.

Speaking at the lecture, chaired by Adele Jinadu, a Professor of Political Science, Albert told the gathering that universities had moved away from speaking the truth to political officeholders.

Albert, who spoke on the topic: ‘Nigeria’s development challenges: which way forward?’ threw the question to the audience who responded that Nigeria is the giant of Africa.

“In the last 10 years, we have ceased to be the giant of Africa. In fact, people from other African countries have been insulting Nigeria.

“We know the problems and those responsible for it, but what we don’t know is the solution. We may find ourselves in the same position as Somalia and Libya if Nigeria remains with the unresolved problems.

“Those who are smiling today will suffer tomorrow. Those in government have a lot to lose if the system collapses. The system is gradually collapsing,” he said.

Prof. Albert warned that politicians had driven the people to a position that does not exist, and that at some point, the people would fight back.

He stressed that politicians were not talking about the people they govern but about themselves, adding, “Our political system is under a few people. A few people have captured the state.’’

Chairman of the lecture, Prof. Jinadu explained that the role of the universities is to provide alternative voices. He urged the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and the civil society organisations to continue to speak out against anti-peoples policies.

Jinadu disclosed that the few in power were working hard to silence the voice, noting that the struggle for democracy was less, and that as Nigerians make gains, the few are those that would draw others back from moving forward. 

Vice Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Prof. Folasade Ogunsola, described Odukoya as one who is committed to the university, ASUU and education.

Ogunsola, who was represented by the Deputy VC, Prof. Lucian Chukwu, said the celebrant is dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge, and has inspired his colleagues and students.    

Africa Today News, New York

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *