Nigeria's tough times have created a "nation of hopefuls", and that means that moving Nigeria forward is a task to which we are committed.

When will I truly pick up the Name a True Nigerian despite my undying love for this great nation that seem to hold its beauty in the future? When will I reap that just course that I propagate? Nigeria, a great Nation, this is the hope I have, the only thing that keeps me going, but truly will it be selfish of me if I demand to see what I struggled for in my life time? Why does everything Nigeria has to be in the future? Is that not a pointer to the dream that may never be?

These solitary questionings of a patriotic Nigerian reminds me of Proverbs 13:12 which says, " Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when the desire is fulfilled, it is a tree of life."

In as much as I share his passion to see a new Nigeria in his lifetime, I believe that fighting for a better Nigeria is a sacrifice fuelled by unfailing hope. Hope is one of the most potent weapons that have kept humanity going in the face of daunting challenges. It is an optimistic state of mind that is based on an expectation of positive outcomes with respect to events and circumstances in one’s life or the world at large. Thus, a man in deep trouble believes that inasmuch there is life; there is hope for a better tomorrow. In fact, anyone in Nigeria that is not privilege to belong to the less than 10% of the elites in the society will need an army of hope to survive the multi facet problems that continue to ridicule the country amongst comity of nations.

From the unending Boko Haram crisis in the north east to the religious as well as tribal crisis, ritualist killings, armed robbery, kidnapping and herdsmen problem rampaging other part of the country; Nigeria is indeed at a precipice. Nigerians run from one part of the country to a presumed safer side of the country forgetting that it’s a matter of different stroke to different folks. The fact is that death hovers across the country and no one is safe. This explains the necessity of hope in a pariah state like Nigeria where human life has little or no value. Workers are barely paid their entitlement; roads have become a death trap consuming the blood of Nigerians especially graduates and corpers in a ritual like manner. Barely can an academic calendar go by without lecturers going on strike action. Infact, both the universities and polytechnics lectures are currently on strike. Security of lives and properties has become a luxury which the government can’t even afford for its citizens. The killing of the immediate former Chief of Defence Staff; Alex Badeh speaks volume of how terrible security has become in Nigeria.  Nigeria has become the capital of the poorest people on earth with more than 87 million of the country’s population living below two dollars per day. Unemployment is on the rise with 20.9 million people are without jobs according to the Bureau of Statistic’s 3rd quarter report; while consumer price index is not even doing better. It just appears to be no light at the end of the tunnel in Nigeria as everywhere is covered in darkness and according to the minister of Power, Road and Housing; government is not to be blamed for the darkness in the country. Just imagine!

Nigeria's tough times have created a "nation of hopefuls", and that means that moving Nigeria forward is a task to which we are committed.

For me, I foresee a Nigeria founded on justice and honesty of purpose. This is so because all great nations of the world thrive on justice. I see a Nigeria that has zero tolerance for corruption, religious and tribal bigotry. Indeed, I want to see a Nigeria where people will proudly say “I am a Nigerian living in so, so and so state” and not a Nigerian of a particular state of origin!

I have a dream that sooner than later, the votes of Nigerians will count and we shall bid adieu to electoral fraud. I envisage that in no distant future, our democracy will be built on one man, one vote – the only condition for the sustenance of constitutional democracy. I believe that if the people’s votes count, the leadership will be more accountable to all Nigerians. This will positively impact on all sectors of society because politics is the super structure upon which the economy rests. Once you fix the polity, you remedy so many socio-economic problems plaguing the society. Though this sounds like a tall dream, it is possible with electoral reforms, empowerment and positive attitudes by Nigerians.

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Even in the best of systems, it is the operators that make it work and not the Constitution or Act of Parliament per se. The implication of this is that irrespective of the constitutional review and the electoral reforms carried out by the National Assembly, if Nigerians stick to their old ways of doing things, the system will still not work effectively! It is thus left to our leaders to take the baton of leadership and spearhead a change that is needed and must come.

I see a Nigeria where the political leaders are not egocentric, and do not engage in misappropriation and embezzlement of public funds to their own exploitative advantage and satisfaction of their selfish interests, but rather channel funds to appropriate sectors for the development of the country.

The Nigeria of my dream is a country where Nigerian citizens enjoy critical infrastructure such as good road, water, and uninterrupted power supply, to mention but a few. Power will power the economy and help the country to attain it's Goals. With power, industries including large and small scale businesses would yield optimum results. I want to see a Nigeria in which a vibrant railway network is an integral part of the transport system. This will make our roads last longer because most of the cargoes carried on roads will have to be transported by rail. This has far reaching short and long-term impact by reducing the cost of transport and subsequently of foods and other goods transported, which will ultimately lower inflation.

I foresee a Nigeria devoid of alarming unemployment and insecurity.Where citizens sufferings are ameliorated through prompt payment of workers' salaries and pensions.

A country where there will be fulfillment of promises, and not the usual lies and propaganda used to win elections. A country where the police and other security agencies will truly be our friend and strife to protect us rather than subjecting us to inhuman and unlawful treatments which dampens our trust in their existence and ability to protect.

I dream of a Nigeria where the judiciary will be totally free from undue manipulations from other organs of government, and rather strife to protect the common man, as it is often referred to as 'The Last Hope of the Common man'. A country where both the rich and the poor can be granted fair justice and treated equally within the tenets of the Rule of Law.

I dream of a Nigeria where we can freely thrive in the pursuit of our daily goals and be sure that there won't be any form of discrimination on the grounds of ethnicity, religion, wealth or status. A country where both the rich and the poor can thrive favorably, respecting their individual differences without the unfair suppression of one over the other.
I dream of a Nigeria where we can thrive in the spirit of national consciousness, and eschewing all forms of ethnocentrism and ethnic chauvinism. A country where we will be united in love that is devoid of wars and clashes that can give rise to the unfortunate shedding of innocent blood. A country where mutual understanding exists between farmers and herdsmen in the pursuit of their life activities.

I dream of a Nigeria where democracy can truly be upheld, and granting the people the opportunity to take their destinies in their own hands by electing credible leaders that will reflect their collective interests and goals. A country where elections can be free and fair without any form of manipulations.

To see this new and better Nigeria, we must keep hope alive in the face of daunting challenges we face as a country.

Christian Alert Group, Nigeria Rise Initiative in conjunction with Citizens for Righteousness and Social Justice is the Best way to Go Raising Anti Corruption Crusaders fighting Injustices in a Violent and Immoral Society of Nigeria for a Better Nigeria come 2019.

For more information: 08038276188, 08033376734, 08038754069 & 07034463316. USA contacts: 7708759085 & 2149005848.

Please forward others, Sharing is Caring for a Better Nigeria 2019.

The People's Bishop Kenneth Obi *Anti* -Corruption Crusader and *Advocate* of Humanity and Social Justice.
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