Pastor Sam Adeyemi’s depiction of a future Nigeria is great, but are we ready to take up the challenge?

Nigeria celebrated her independence Thursday, in a rather solemn mood for obvious reasons. The mood of the Independence Day anniversary re-echoed the fact that many Nigerians have lost faith in the government and the hopes of seeing any meaningful development in Nigeria has dwindled.

But in the midst of all the moodiness, Leadership expert and Senior Pastor at Daystar Christian Cenntre, Sam Adeyemi shared a message of hope on his Twitter page that depicts Nigeria as a country with advanced infrastructure in 2035, sparking different reactions from some Nigerians. His tweet reads:

It’s our decision, not our condition, that determines our destiny. The potential for light is in the darkness. We are light. We dispel darkness. WE ARE NOT VICTIMS; WE ARE LEADERS! We choose to build a developed Nigeria. God help us. Happy Independence Day Nigeria! #[email protected].”

How Nigerians reacted:

With the many failed campaign promises and abandoned developmental projects by successive governments in Nigeria, it is understandable that some Nigerians may not believe in such transformative change happening any time soon or even decades from now.

Notwithstanding, with the kind of resources Nigeria is endowed with, there is every possibility that the level of infrastructural development Pastor Sam envisages, which is comparable to that of Dubai, is achievable if these resources are well-harnessed for developmental projects.

Nigeria is not only blessed with a huge reserve of crude oil that contributes immensely to generating revenue for the nation, but it is also replete with other natural resources including natural gas, tin, iron ore, coal, limestone, niobium, lead, zinc and arable land. While the oil and gas sector accounts for about 10 per cent of gross domestic product, the petroleum exports revenue represents around 86 per cent of total exports revenue. The overdependence on crude oil has, however, left much of its solid minerals and arable land untapped for developmental purposes unlike in the United Arab Emirate where resources are well-harnessed for the country’s development.

Many people are awestruck at the sight of Dubai’s outstanding infrastructure but the story of the city’s transformation from an ordinary fishing village to a futuristic metropolis is even more awe-inspiring. Its stunning architecture – fascinating skyscrapers and indoor ski slopes that captivate the world did not just happen by chance – they are the result of good governance, visionary leadership and effective management of its oil deposit.

The UAE was more or less like a desert about thirty years ago before the discovery of its abundant oil reserves, but today it is what it is. Yet, it does not have all the minerals like Nigeria.

If such transformation can occur just by deploying resources the right way coupled with visionary leadership, then there is every possibility that such level of infrastructure development can be replicated in Nigeria if only there is the judicious use of our natural resources.

Hopefully, Nigeria will produce such a leader someday and Pastor Sam’s envisioned infrastructure model will become our nation’s reality making Nigeria the Dubai of Africa.

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