On Wednesday, October 1, 2014, Nigeria will be 54 years old as a nation, having gotten her independence from the British colonial masters on October 1, 1960. To celebrate the nation’s 54th anniversary, YES INTERNATIONAL! Magazine’s GBENGA SHABA sought some celebrities’ assessment of the country at 54…
OBY EDOZIEH – (Actress/Producer)
Nigeria can be better.
EBELE THE FLUTIST – (Flutist/Singer)
Nigeria is a great country, we can’t dispute that fact. We are the giant of Africa by all indications. We have grown over the years to get to this point where we are today. We are a strong nation, and we have all it takes to be even a stronger nation. We have a lot of deficits, but our deficit is parallel to our uniqueness and abilities. It might not be wrong for us or other nations to point or complain about our issues as a nation, but it will be very wrong for them not to state the strengths of this great nation. In conclusion, I want to say that I’m proud of this great country and proud to be a Nigerian. None of us is free from flaws, and as individuals, our flaws, together, make up the flaws of this country. Let us come together in unity and oneness of heart to work for the progress of our nation. May God bless all our efforts, and our nation will be blessed. God bless Nigeria, God bless you, God bless me.
OKEREMUTE IRUVWE, aka D-Don – (Comedian)
I will describe Nigeria as work in progress, with incompetent workers. But we are hopeful because God will soon wipe out all the bad god fathers and then things will be done properly.
ALEX O – (Singer)
There has been a lot of development and economic growth. More work needs to be done for things to get even better. Nigeria, at the moment, is on the path to greatness. We all need to work harder, play our individual parts, and pray to the Almighty God for more of His blessings. We will get there.
SAHEED BALOGUN – (Actor)
Suffering and smiling.
ELIZABETH TAIWO, aka Easy Lizy – (Singer)
Nigeria a crawling giant that is struggling to rise, regardless of the corruption, terrorism, diseases, poverty, maladministration, etc.
AJIBOLA MUYIWA DANLADI aka Danny Young – (Singer)
I will describe Nigeria at 54 as a wealthy man who has many children and has all the resources required to cater for them. But today, most of the children are living in abject poverty due to the corrupt wives he married and put into positions of responsibility. Nigeria continues to move around the same point since independence. I will also describe Nigeria at 54 in the likeness of a man who has failed to evolve a sustainable plan for his family’s growth in size and volume in spite of a visible legacy of resource and potentials. His human asset has begun to waste, unfulfilled. Survival of the fittest now becomes the order of the day, crises the result. The Nigerian family, now in a game of survival and supremacy, becomes divided against itself religiously, tribally, generationally.
MANDY UZONITSHA – (Comedienne)
Nigeria is still a toddler. Still crawling; we need to take our hands off the ground and start walking. God will help us.
LANCELOT IMASUEN – (Director)
Nigeria is good, growing, going through its fair share of challenges associated with nationhood, here and there. But we shall overcome and attain the greatness of our collective dream. It’s well with my country, Nigeria.
CHIBUZO PATRICK – (Business woman)
After 54 years of independence, Nigeria’s economy lies prostrate, bogged down by huge debt, dilapidated infrastructure, social strife and general feeling of insecurity, with the citizenry brooding over the bleak future of the nation. The collapse of the economy is a large dirge for the collapse of everything else. Education is in the throes of death; our morals are already interred; our politics born into extremely inclement weather suffered a few gasps and immediately became comatose; our hospitals, too morbid a joke to be generally considered mere consulting clinics, have given way to a general endorsement of the babalawos. With a political class that has lost its vision, if it ever had any; a judiciary that has been brow-beaten into impotence and a traditional institution that has become a historical calamity. Nigeria is a shamble of failed institutions. The legislature which is supposed to be the real symbol of democracy that differentiates civil rule from dictatorship has been pocketed by the executive. It has been castrated by the sycophancy of its leadership. While the executive beats the drum of misplaced ethics, the legislature regretfully sways to it with nifty bootlicking steps. Sadly, each step resounds with a revolting echo of retrogression. Nigeria is today walking on crutches having been amputated by the corruption, mismanagement and inefficiency of its leaders. That is the bitter truth. But Nigeria is one of the most beautiful and unique countries in Africa. This region is famous for its natural views and locations. I am proud to be a Nigerian, desperately hoping that our leaders do the needful and make this nation a pride as supposed.
AKEEM BABS – (Event Manager)
Nigeria at 54 is still crawling like a baby, whereas it is supposed to have stood on its own. Our leadership skills are not really up to expectations, but I believe shortly that we will get there.
ADEWALE AYUBA – (Artiste)
Nigeria at 54 is at slow pace. I hope our leaders do the right things to make our nation a greater place. We deserve to have a better welfare and live a good quality life. Long live Nigeria and happy independence.
FOLARIN FALANA, aka Falz – (Singer)
Nigeria is 54, but it’s a country that still has a long way to go in terms of the state of affairs of the country. People in power need to work towards being more accountable and responsible to the citizens of this country so that we can move forward. There isn’t much to celebrate this year.
ABIODUN OLAPADE, aka MC Abbey – (Comedian)
I’ll look at the glass as half full. For we are progressing. We are not where we want to be, but we are not where we used to be. A lot have been done in reforms, in agriculture, in power, in employment, in the true spirit of democracy and much is yet to be done.
FEMI OGEDENGBE – (Actor)
COLLINS CLEVER IROGHE, aka Dezine – (Artiste)
Nigeria at 54 is like a man lost in the dark; still doesn’t know how to get to see the light. We are blessed; we’ve got all it takes to be the best, yet nothing to show for it. But we are still keeping faith about a better Nigeria. God bless Nigeria.
OSSY COLE – (Artiste Manager)
Our great country Nigeria at 54 is like a sheep without shepherd. The rate of corruption is on the increase and our moral value is nothing to write home about, the state of insecurity is alarming. But in all, we are hopeful of a better Nigeria in the future.
CHINEPOH EXCEL, aka Xcellente – (Artiste)
As a Camerounian, I think Nigeria at 54 is truly the giant of Africa. As a country, Nigeria enjoys stable democracy unlike my country, so I believe Nigeria would become greater in the nearest future as my second home. Long live Federal Republic of Nigeria.
JOSHUA INIYEZO, aka Solid Star – (Singer)
Nigeria at 54 is still a growing child compared to the first world nations. Though corruption has eaten deep, we believe in a greater Nigeria in the future.
FOLUKE DARAMOLA-SALAKO – (Actress/Producer)
A sham of a nation. If we look back at our 54 years as a nation, we cannot say we have achieved. What can we say we are producing without the white man? Our oil has become our doom because it has made us Nigerians extremely redundant mentally. Nobody is thinking anymore. We the youths have remained children in Nigeria. Only a few are thinking. It’s such a pity that we have next to nothing to show for all these years after independence, apart from corruption, corruption, and corruption.
LAWRENCE ‘LURRENZ’ ONUZULIKE – (Producer)
If I say Nigeria hasn’t progressed at 54, I’ll be lying. I’m totally impressed by some of the things we have achieved. That said, I must add that we still have a long way to go. It’s still disturbing that in this era, a giant like Nigeria is still battling with electricity problem, bad roads, corruption, unemployment and extreme poverty. Not to forget insecurity and bad image overseas. It has become a shame that countries like Ghana, Tanzania and even Benin Republic are now comparing themselves to us.
AMANDA AKHIMEN – (Entrepreneur)
Nigeria at 54; we have come a long way and we still have a long way to go. Despite all the ups and downs, we have managed to stand strong and hope for the better. There’s been a lot of improvement since independence, but we are still expecting more.
BETHEL NJOKU, aka Senator – (Comedian)
Well, in my own opinion, I think Nigeria isn’t doing badly. We as a country are passing through a developmental phase that requires patience. There’s so much to be done by the government and people of Nigeria. But we can.
ALEX OKOROJI – (Actress)
My honest assessment of Nigeria at 54 is that we still have a long way to go before we are truly independent of the old ways of thinking and practice that got us where we are today. If Nigeria will make any progress, the time is now. What we need is a revolution, where the youths and citizens are willing to change their mind set, character, become actively involved in the polity, policy and participate in the development of their community.
PRINCE IFEANYI DIKE – (Actor/TV Presenter)
Nigeria is evolving into a great nation. It’s a gradual process. We should all join hands and think of ways to make it better, not sit on the side and bad mouth Nigeria. My problem is with Nigerians in Diaspora. They live in other people’s countries as if it’s theirs only to be deported and they start complaining. The bitter leaf soup you eat in Nigeria nourishes your body, the one you eat abroad causes diarrhea. So, give Nigeria a chance and let government create programmes that will benefit citizens to give them a sense of patriotism.
ALETILE OLUWASEYI LAWRENCE, aka Seyi Law (Comedian)
It’s been a journey with its ups and downs. I know we want things to happen speedily, but I need us to know that it will take a while to correct the anomalies of the years past. We have to be grateful to God for where we are and keep our hopes alive. It is not yet an anniversary with cheers, but things will get better. Nevertheless, we should rejoice that we are still here. Happy 54th Independence Anniversary.
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