By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
Former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has declared that the surest way Nigerians can defeat the various problems plaguing the nation is through cooperation and working together, irrespective of their intangible differences.
Atiku specifically cautioned that Nigerians must not allow their weakness to wall their strength.
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the 2019 general elections, said these in his new year message to Nigerians.
In the message personally signed by him, Atiku clearly said that the country’s diversity offers a rare opportunity of plural perspectives to finding a solution to her problems.
According to him, “If we fail to take that advantage, we would be weaker while the problems keep growing bigger and the blame will be on us”.
He pointed out that as Nigerians embrace this New Year with brighter hopes of restoration, they should do so with even a stronger commitment to unity, cooperation and mutual love.
In the words of Atiku, “Just like it was with the deadly virus, we are exposed to a common threat of terrorism, kidnapping and sundry criminalities; threat of economic meltdown, unemployment and poverty; and, even our solution to the problem of climate change must be within the focus of conserving the planet we call home.
“We cannot wholly defeat any of these threats if we refuse to cooperate and work together irrespective of our intangible differences.
“As Nigerians, we are all aware of the challenges that bedevil the country.
We need not begin to enumerate them.
But what we must not let happen is allowing our weakness to wall our strength.
“Our diversity offers a rare opportunity of plural perspectives to finding a solution to our problems.
“If we fail to take that advantage, we would be weaker while the problems keep growing bigger and the blame will be on us.
“As we embrace this New Year with brighter hopes of restoration, let us do so with even a stronger commitment to unity, cooperation and mutual love.
“Let us work as one people, under one God with one country to call home”, he said.
Going down the memory lane, the former Vice President noted that the out-gone year was quite dramatic and it is only by “the grace of the Almighty God that we survived to witness the succeeding year”.
Continuing, he said, “It is cheering that we are entering the New Year with refreshing news of a handful of certified vaccines against the dreaded Covid-19 virus.
“And better still is news of commencement of vaccination in some parts of the world. I am expectant that the vaccine(s) would soon be available for vaccination in Nigeria. It is also hoped that very soon life would return to normal.
“As a country, we have taken our share of the blow that Covid-19 dealt to the globe. And worst still, we suffered a multi-facet downcast on account of of lazy and uninspiring leadership from the government at the center – most especially.
“But just as I often do, I pray that God should heal the hearts of families who have lost loved ones to the disease, as well as those who died on account of insecurity and ringing poverty occasioned by a poor management of our national economy.
“The damage that the pandemic had done to our lives remains, and it would take some time for us to overcome. “However, bad as the virus was, the fundamental lesson that the scourge reinforces is our bond as one species of homo sapiens, in which an attack on one is an attack on all.
“Moving forward, we would require the same kind of cooperation that it takes to develop an antidote to Covid-19, to come up with solutions to many of the other ills that confront our world. Perhaps, that is the lesson to be taken from the pandemic, and it should be our pathway into the New Year”, he stated.