On October I, 1960, Nigeria gained her independence. See were we are today, 63 years of being free from the colonial masters, 63 years of being independent. Let’s forget the odds in the journey and celebrate the achievements so far.
Nigeria is a country of diverse ethnic groups, religions and beliefs. However, our country is still unique in its own way. The mineral and human resources, the blessings of nature and the fertile soil make Nigeria a nation of pride.
The early Nigerian nationalists were made up of educated Africans who had the opportunity to study outside the shores of the country, or liberated slaves. For them, they were particular about accepting the British rule and being citizens.
However, they were vehemently against some acts of the administration such as taxation and water rates, racial discrimination of Nigerians being treated as second class citizens and equal pay with their European colleagues.
It was because of things like this that the nationalists started to think that the British needed to hand over the administration of Nigeria to the elite in Nigeria or include them in the administration. This movement achieved considerable success in their struggle against colonial rule. The Aba Women’s Riot, among others, is a good instance here as it was a struggle against the imposition of taxation.
Our past leaders who fought so hard, who strove to see we are were we are today, who yearned for the freedom of Nigeria but have gone to be with their ancestors, they all should know that we are forever grateful and their impact will last forever in our hearts.
However, some people are of the opinion that Nigeria has not developed and does not have any significant changes since independence. But I want to assure you that no matter how bad the journey is, remember there is always a positive side. If Nigeria could be were it is today, then surely it has taken a step.
As we celebrate our independence, let’s also pray for our dear country, to move the nation were justice and peace shall reign. Nigeria my country, Nigeria my pride, long Live Nigeria.
Comfort Enoch Istifanus,
Department of Mass Communication, University of Maiduguri, Borno state