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The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu has commended Dr. Uma Eleazu for his selfless service and contribution to the development of Nigeria as a teacher, administrator, public servant, industrialist and politician.

The Governor, who gave the commendation at a colloquium organised by Centre for Values in Leadership (CVL) to mark Dr. Eleazu’s 90th birthday celebration, said the celebrant has been “exemplary in his commitment and passion, character and patriotic disposition”. 

Sanwo-Olu, represented at the event by the Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Mrs. Folashade Jaji, appreciated the celebrant for documenting his experience and thoughts for the benefit of the present and future generations in his new book titled ‘Nigeria As I See It: Reflections on The Challenge of Leadership’. 

He maintained that the book is being presented at an auspicious time in the history of Nigeria when it is quite challenging to be in a position of leadership. 

According to him, the thoughts and reflections of the author would help those who are privileged to occupy leadership positions connect the past to the present and project for the future.

The Governor also appreciated Prof. Pat Utomi, the founder of Centre for Values in Leadership and the management team for organising the colloquium under the CVL Leaders without title series in honour of Dr. Eleazu. 

A popular broadcaster and journalist, Dr. Reuben Abati in his review of the book, described the author as a blunt and fearless human being, saying that the book did not only analyse Nigeria’s challenges as a nation but also offered solutions. 

He averred that some of the nation’s problems listed in the book include selfish interest, nepotism, religious intolerance, ethnicity and failure to do the right things at the right time, which had led to distrust between the government and the governed. 

The book, according to Abati, also traced the genesis of several crises in the country and the roles played by the likes of Late Obafemi Awolowo, Nnamdi Azikwe and Tafawa Balewa among others. 

He said the high point of the book is the profiling of Nigerian Presidents from 1960 to 2020 and the class of politicians in army uniform.

Also speaking at the event, the former Minister of Finance and Economic Development, Dr. Idika Kalu noted that Nigeria has all it takes to be great but fails to pay attention to the things that matter.

Kalu averred that it has been difficult to sustain rational efforts in our society despite having men and resources that could have moved the nation further in development but due to lack of sustained ideals, it has not been possible. 

A discussant and Head, Corporate Development, Capital Alliance, Mrs. Uwa Osa-Oboh in her submission on the failure of Public/Private Partnership in developing the nation, said the initiative has not worked because the nation pays lip-service to development. 

She, however, stated that for Nigeria to have the expected change, those in the position of authority must do away with entrenched interest, incentives of office and ignorance.

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