Nigeria: The Challenge of Leadership

​Leadership is the art of motivating a group of people toward achieving a common goal or purpose.

A leader ought to be an inspirator and galvanizer to those who trust and bestow responsibility on him to lead.

A leader must be humble, a good listener, compassionate, firm, progressive, disciplined, transparent, selfless, and accountable.
He must be democratic and just, fair-minded, and see the entire people as his own.

These qualities are qualities that leaders need to manifest and practicalize to push their followers to empathize, support, and believe in their vision.
When followers of a leader perceive him to be an embodiment of virtues, the discipline he will inspire, they will come to follow his path.
These are the type of leaders that have transformed their societies since time immemorial.

We have numerous examples of inspirational and visionary leaders who have transformed their countries.
Within four decades, Lee Kuan Yew of Singapore transformed an economic backwater with little or no resources into an advanced and economically advanced country.

We have seen great Leaders like Mao Zedong; Hua Guofeng; Hu Yaobang; Zhou Enlai; Li Peng, and Wen Jiabao, that run China since the 1940s. These leaders with vision miraculously transformed China from a feudal, backward, and emerging country within five decades to a world superpower that, when it sneers, the entire world trembles.

Here in Africa, we have seen the great work done by President Paul Kagame of Rwanda. He has, under three decades, transformed massively a country that was in the past racked by ethnic strife, civil wars, genocide, and instability.
However, we have seen that Nigeria has never had the type of leadership that has transformed other countries.

It is not too late to begin the search to identify such leadership potentials in Nigeria. It is incumbent on us to identify people with such qualities at the various levels or segments of society.

I believe a leader certainly needs good followership to propel him into not abandoning his principle and vision for his country.
Where a leader is has a followership that is cynical and doesn’t agree with his vision or it is likely that he cannot bring his vision into actuality.

The problem of bad leaders that Nigeria grappled with and confronted in the past 60 years can be situated on the failure of Nigerians to be good followers and have failed to identify the leadership with the capacity to lead them to the promised land.

The young people that constitute the majority of the population must use democratic methods and information communication technology to identify leaders that will come to them to canvass support. They must shun ego-centric power mongers and those who will want to go into public office to use it as an avenue to accumulate obscene wealth to the detriment of the followership.

In conclusion, good followership is intertwined and committed with a good leader. They are like siamese twins. They complement each other.
I, therefore, fervently believed, that with the right mix of leadership and followership, Nigeria will blossom in no short time, shake off its lethargy and become a world power. Nigeria has all it takes: a huge population, enormous resources, intelligent, hardworking, and energic people, diversity of cultures, etc., to take its rightful place in the nations’ comity.

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