The immediate former Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has said that Nigeria is still searching for national leaders who will prioritise the national interest of the country above any ethnic interest.
Amaechi who stated this while speaking as a guest speaker at the 2023 TheNiche Annual Lecture titled “Why We Stride and Slip: Leadership, Nationalism, and the Nigerian Condition,” in Lagos on Thursday, said the political leaders now ride on the strength of ethnicity to winning political offices.
According to him, the only political leader who nearly passed as a national leader was former president Olusegun Obasanjo, saying the rest were ethnic leaders.
“Most times, we elect those who openly show that they are ethnic leaders and they are there for their ethnic group,” he said.
“Our political elites constantly run to their ethnic bases to provoke ethnic debate each time they fail to win advantages in their struggle for power and privilege at the national level.
“The only person near that point of Nationalism, with all due respect, is ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo. The rest are ethnic leaders.
“Truly remarkable national leadership is the ability of a leader to galvanise the totality of a nation around the common national banner with a vision and a sense of mission.
“The truly remarkable national leader is the one who can rise above limitations to take the nation and its people to that place they long for but have never been before.
“It is a place of national greatness, pride, achievements, and shared goals, aspirations, and prosperity,” he said.