Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi| File Photo
“The only living nationalist in Nigeria is ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo’
By Valentine Amanze
Rivers State former governor and the immediate past Transport Minister, Mr. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, has said that Nigeria has only one seaport – Lekki Deep Seaport – built by ex-President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
He said that the other ports – Port Harcourt, Warri, Onne and Apapa– were no seaports; but river coast ports that big ships would not anchor in.
Amaechi spoke as a guest speaker at TheNiche’s annual lecture, the 4th in the series, titled, ‘Why We Stride and Slip: Leadership, Nationalism and the Nigerian Condition”, held at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Victoria Island, Lagos on October 26, 2023.
Amaechi, who commended ex-President Buhari for his “massive infrastructure development” in Nigeria, wondered why the present regime was not giving credit to his achievements.
For instance, he said that it was during the tenure of Buhari as president that the Second Niger Bridge, Abuja-Kaduna railway, Kano-Katsina, Lagos-Ibadan and many other projects were completed.
He also disclosed that it was the bickering among Southern political leaders that denied the zone West-East rail project during Buhari’s tenure.
On the severe hardship in Nigeria, Amaechi blamed the subjects and not the leadership.
He accused the subjects (citizens) of collaborating with the political leaders to deny the majority their rights as citizens.
He said that no politician in Nigeria could say he never looted.
According to Amaechi, when politicians want power, they wipe up tribal sentiments, which they abandon after grabing power.
The former minister, who is currently studying at the Nigerian Law School, however, lamented the dearth of nationalists in Nigeria.
“We nolonger have nationalists the way we used to have in the first republic.
“Perhaps, the only living nationalist in Nigeria is ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo.
“Show me a politician, who has not looted before?”
He said that it was the failure of Nigerians to insist in having good representation that politicians are capitalizing on to loot.
For instance, he asked, “Where is students unionism?” stressing, “Student leaders today go on convoy. They are now used by policians unlike our time in the university.”