Ohanaeze Ndi Igbo, the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, says Nigeria has gone more years backward than forward as its citizens celebrate its 60th anniversary.

A statement by its acting Secretary General/Publicity secretary, Prince Uche Achi-Okpaga, said there is virtually nothing to celebrate at the 60th anniversary of Nigeria. He said: A civil servant retires at the age of 60 years. This means that at that age he/she has offered the best of his/her services and initiatives. However, at 60, Nigeria is counting losses instead of gains. On security, Nigeria was a non permanent member of the UNO Security Council. We contributed troops as part of United Nations Peace Keeping Force to many Nations and they clearly distinguished themselves.”

He noted that today, Boko Haram, bandits and/or killer Fulani herdsmen are killing military officers, trained with tax payers money, ravaging homes, villages and towns, all because professionalism and military precision have been relegated on the iota of ethnic chauvinism.

Ohanaeze pointed out that the Police are bastardized on allied sentiments. “No Igboman is a commissioner of police in the South-East if not in the entire southern states and may never rise to the position of IGP as they, like in the military, are retired at the peak of their service in order to appoint a junior officer from the core North as dramatized in the present case.”

On health, Ohanaeze noted that COVID-19 came and exposed the medical under-belly of Nigeria. “It caught us unawares and killed many prominent people who could afford any medical bill but had not the opportunity to fly overseas for medical attention due to the embargo on international flights that lasted long. In the whole of the South-East for instance, it was only Ebonyi State that had a readily available COVID-19 testing laboratory,” Ohanaeze stated.

On the economy, the group said that the Naira has continued to nosedive because at 60 years, the country is still importing fuel in spite of all the oil refineries and billions of naira spent on “turn around maintenance” and instead of copying or developing the modular refineries in the Niger Delta, which is not a rocket science, we are closing and destroying them. “A greater percentage of Nigerians do not access dependable drinking water, electricity supply and good roads. We have continued to import virtually everything including toothpick. Ohanaeze lamented that the palm oil, cocoa, groundnut and all other agricultural products that sustained the economy prior to the discovery of oil have become history and in gasping for breath in the wake of the COVID-19 onslaught we decided to punish Nigerians the more by increasing electricity tariffs and the  fuel pump price. “In law, the President, without mincing words, informed Nigerians that national interest preponderates over the rule of law and today the DSS can bamboozle Supreme Court judges and a chief of army staff, meant to be seen and not heard in a democracy, could threaten a state of emergency in a region without any repercussion. “The lists are legion but that is the long story. The short one is that Nigeria has gone more years backward so that there is virtually nothing to celebrate. We should be bowing our heads in shame in the Comity of Nations.’

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