A former Nigeria’s President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, said on Saturday in Lagos that good governance was imperative for the socio-economic growth of the country.
Obasanjo said this at the Pro. Gabriel Fakeye Memorial Lecture entitled, “The Challenge of Good Governance, National Stability and Development” at Cherubim and Seraphim Movement Church, Ayo Ni O.
He said for good governance to be felt in Nigeria, there was need for national cohesion, vision and cooperation among the components of the system with a common focus on people-oriented development.
“We see leaders as managers that make decisions, organise people and achieve organizational goals; yes, leaders must do all those, but leaders must be visionary and must communicate strategies to achieve the vision.
“The ability to take risks and adapt to change, develop a vision, influence people, provide direction, innovate and solve problems is the hallmark of leadership.
“Appointment at the leadership level should be based on competence, knowledge and experience; any other consideration will be based on sub-optimal,’’ Obasanjo said.
Harping on national stability, he said since the nation was an extension of families the intrinsic family values that had evolved from generations to generations should be given attention.
He said: “A stable system is that that can weather storms, psychologically, spiritually, financially, environmentally; for some storms we need spiritual intervention and that is where the church have a major role to play.
“A nation consists of the communities and family constitutes communities, therefore, the stability of the nation depends on how stable or robust the families are and consequently the communities.
“The nerve centre of national stability is the family. Individuals, communities and nations can only develop if they are innovative.
“innovation could be incremental breakthrough or disruptive in nature, our leaders must embrace disruptive innovations.
“The Bible teaches us to love our neighbours as ourselves. If we love our neighbour as ourselves, we will love our nation and be patriotic.’’
Obasanjo said the church had the responsibility to restore family values and that they should make the church a training ground for future leaders.
“The church as we have seen in some nations throw up national leadership and we must, therefore, encourage our churches to dedicate time to the training of youths in the choir, bible study and evangelism.
“A nation that is cohesive and built on core positive family value inclusive of reward/punishment system that is open and just shall progress.
“We need prayers that the Lord will direct us to see more of the positive than the negative reasons for national unity.
“The church must be a training ground for leadership and the Bible is the best handbook for such training,’’ he stressed.
The General Leader, Cherubim and Seraphim, Apostle Funsho Korode, in his address, urged Christians to imbibe the leadership qualities of the late Fakeye.
“Although as a religious leader, he impacted greatly on the political terrain through his non-discriminatory preaching on the pulpit and on the airwaves.
“If we truly love him and his legacies, then we must all fight tooth and nail and within available resources to see that this nation, Nigeria, is restored to greatness, prosperity and righteousness,’’ he said.
The Chairman of Standard Chartered Bank, Mr Remi Omotosho, one of the guest speakers at the occasion, urged Christians to build on the legacies of Fakeye.