US Urges Nigerians To Be More United Ahead 2019 Elections

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United States’ Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Stuart Symington

The  Ambassador of the United States of America to Nigeria, Mr Stuart Symington has urged Nigerians to work towards making Nigeria more “united and more secured in 2019” rather than things that will divide the country before the 2019 elections. 

As he implored the masses to look inwards on how to make Nigeria greater by themselves individually rather than waiting for any leader for making the country a better place.

He maintained that the race towards having rancour free election in 2019 should begins this year, 2018. 

Symington made the advise while speaking at event to commemorate 48th World Earth Day held at the University of Ibadan.

Earth Day celebration was founded 48 years ago by a former Wisconsin U.S Senator Gaylord Nelson with the objective of introducing environmental issues into the U.S national agenda. The annual global celebration is however to support the environment and promote awareness of the great need to protect the environment and the planet.

He explained that Nigerians should find solution to their problems from within, noted that Nigerians individually should place themselves above their leaders who were only at the helms of affairs for a while.

According to him, “Many Nigerians will spend much of this year thinking about what will happen in 2019. My mind said that it is extraordinary important for every Nigerian to spend this year thinking about what to do to make Nigeria more secured, peaceful, prosperous and united.

“I don’t think Nigeria can lose a day or a year in its history by sitting down to find a solution to its problems. In the first year of my stay in Nigeria, I traveled to all the 36 states of the country. Everywhere I reached; people said they have leadership challenge at the local, state and national levels. My first reaction to push back the question is that the nation is in democracy, the people are the leaders, they are the government. You did it in 2015.

“Two weeks ago, I was in Kaduna and I suddenly realised that there is a challenge because there are two sides to leadership; the leader and the ship. In a democracy, the people are the ship, the pilot is only there for a time but the ship remains. The most important thing is not what Nigeria will do in 2019 but what they will do now because they are the ship.

According to him, “Nigeria means more than the people. What has brought you together as a nation is the people and the people  being able to say that believe in the Nigerian dream. For me, the most important thing is the people but without the people, there can’t be Nigeria. I have three ideas to share with you: you, diversity and resilience”.

 

Speaking on the importance of preserving nature in various parts of the country, Symington noted that its people, their diversity and resilience are the key elements that germane and unique to making Nigeria different from every other country going by his sojourn across the 36 states of the federation in his capacity as a representative of the US government in the country.

“I have been to the Wikki warm spring in Yankari reserves. I have travelled through the lagoon from Lagos to Badagri. I have been to the forest of Obudu and the spot where the River Niger and River Benue meet. They are amazing. This country is beautiful, amazing but a lot of Nigerians does not know it.

“I want you to think of the forest not as a forest but as a future. You must learn to use the existence of the forest to make money and life. Discourage those who sell bush meats by not buying and use social media to expose those who smuggles animals that are endangered species.

While harping on the need for the people to be more responsible and responsive in their interaction with the environment in the face of the diverse environmental problems that are threatening the continued existence of humanity, Symington said practices such as patronage of bush meat sellers as well as aiding animal smugglers must be discouraged.

 

“Nigerians must continue to think of what to do to make the country greater. When it comes to diversity, the treasures of Nigeria are explored. The diversity of Nigeria is extraordinary not only in the people but in the place and the natural endowments.

 

“I want you to think of the forest not as a forest but as a future. You must learn to use the existence of the forest to make money and life. Discourage those who sell bush meats by not buying and use social media to expose those who smuggles animals that are endangered species.

 

“There are trees in the forest that produces foods, cloths and all that are needed. It is all about the people, their resilience and their diversity. Don’t just save the earth, make it better and make all of us the beneficiaries better.”

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