Anthony Okogie, a former archbishop of the Catholic diocese in Lagos, Nigeria is dying on the cross of governmental inefficiency and falsehood at 59.
The cardinal said this in an article entitled “At 59, what will save Nigeria?”.
The archbishop said the country’s addiction to falsehood and allergy to truth is its greatest undoing.
“The truth is, at 59, our country is wounded, bleeding and dying having being nailed to the cross of governmental inefficiency and falsehood,” he said.
“We and our leaders must quit the path of deceit. Our president and governors, ministers and commissioners, members of national and state assemblies, our judges and legal practitioners, we religious leaders, and we citizens — we all must take responsibility for healing this country.”
Okogie said the country has not gotten better since independence.
“When we begin to admit the truth that, 59 years after independence, instead of getting better, things are getting worse. We and our leaders have a duty to our benevolent God and to our children’s children to work for a better Nigeria,” he said.
“The best present we can offer to Nigeria at 59 is to repent from sins against God and against Nigeria. We must, individually and collectively, resolve to work for a better Nigeria
According to him, Nigerians are unhappy because truth has been abandoned and justice banished.
“Honesty has become a crime, dishonesty is rewarded. Competence no longer matters. But Nigeria needs leaders who are intellectually, ethically and technically competent to manage her affairs,” he said.
Okogie said the country’s democracy is sick unto death, “perhaps dead already.”
At 59, the spate of kidnapping in the country tells a parable about Nigerians, he said.
“Oil-rich Nigeria is the poverty capital of the world. Her wealth is in the hands of a few while the majority live in destitution,” the cardinal said.
Praying that they would not wait in vain, the 83-year-old cleric said Nigerians have been waiting for 59 years for the executive to do something right, for the legislature to make good laws, and for the judiciary to do justice.