Obasanjo seeks good governance in Africa

Olusegun Obasanjo

Olusegun Obasanjo

The former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has appealed to African leaders to focus on good governance, equity and every avenue that would enhance growth and development in the continent.

Obasanjo, speaking at the end of the Commonwealth Day Service and the Commonwealth Africa Summit, tagged: “Shared prosperity, Mutual Security” held in commemoration of the Commonwealth Week in London, added that good governance with sustainable development would reduce tension and unhealthy rivalry among member-countries in Africa.

He also said that the world would listen to African leaders who will certainly be favoured by globalisation when they look inwards and endeavour to solve their problems without falling back on the West for aids and grants.

“The world would listen to you when they think you are serious and doing what is right. We as Africans should remember that nobody would do anything for us unless we do it ourselves.”

“Although the notion is that African countries must always learn from their Commonwealth counterparts in the developed world, the reality is that there are lots of good things that could also be learnt from Africa.

“If globalisation means “I open my door and you take things out but you close your own door to me, then to hell with globalisation.

“Africa is not an unmitigated failure, there are good things in Africa. Africa remains the cradle of humanity. We need to put our pad on our head as Africans, stand by our load and be ready to carry, then they would help us”, he said.

Commonwealth Africa Initiative Co-Chair, Baroness Flather while speaking to the audience at the event which was attended by the new Commonwealth Secretary-General, Baroness Scotland, said: “Through this activity, we are able to honour Africans who fought in the Second World War, like the Nigerians who fought alongside the British in Burma.

Also in his opening remark, the Summit Co-ordinator, Mr. Dayo Israel, said that Africa has come of age and should not only belong to the Commonwealth but should be able to benefit from Commonwealth.

“There is a reward for being a member of the EU-Free Trade agreement and what have you. We need to begin to push for better rewards for our Commonwealth membership. We must be able to leverage on our shared heritage when it comes to immigration, trade, youth development and security. We must make the Commonwealth more relevant to the ordinary African people.”

Dr. Caroline Harper, while speaking at the Summit at the prestigious Tag Hotel in Victoria said: “We must leave no one behind in the Commonwealth and as the SDG says: we must reach the farthest behind first”.

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