Tinubu seeks for re – introduction of old National Anthem 

Both the Senate and the House of Representatives on Thursday,  gave expeditious consideration to an Executive Bill forwarded to them by  President  Bola Tinubu , seeking for re – introduction of the old National Anthem which starts with popular phrase of ” Nigeria,  We Hail Thee …”

In giving the Executive bill , expeditious consideration, both Chambers gave it first and second reading during plenary on Thursday.

Specifically in the Senate , after given the bill, first reading , the Leader of the Senate , Senator Michael Opeyemi Bamidele ( APC Ekiti Central ), made a lead debate on it for second reading .

The Senate Leader in the lead debate on the bill , said the  Bill seeks to make provision for Nigeria to revert to its old National Anthem that would promote better symbol for unity, peace and prosperity – compared to the current one.

” The old Anthem if reintroduced ,  will inspire in us the zeal to build a fully integrated and indivisible nation, whereby all citizens will live in unity and harmony”, he said.

He posited further that  the old National Anthem was more patriotism and Nationalism – driven.

His words: ” The Anthem, upon rendition, inspired and stimulated deep sense of patriotism in Nigerians. You will also agree with me that those who were around in the 60s and the late 70s, would attest to the fact that the Anthem played quite a significant and crucial role in shaping Nigeria’s national identity and unity, as well as engendered high sense of value and personal belonging amongst the citizenry. 

“It was symbolic of Nigeria’s rich cultural heritage and nationhood. In retrospect, the Anthem served as regular and constant reminder of our journey, as a nation and provoked feelings of nostalgia and fond memories of the country’s early years. 

“Mr President, my dear colleagues, at this momentous time in our national history, it is imperative that we utilise any platform that seeks to unite the country and promote patriotism amongst Nigerians. 

“Accordingly, the old National Anthem, as a symbol of national pride, has provided insights for patriotic reflections on our aspirations, values and hope for a united and prosperous Nigeria. 

“Finally, I implore you all, my Distinguished Colleagues, to support the expeditious passage of this Bill, as it is in line with the RENEWED Reorientation of our collective values and national conscientization efforts of the current administration.

“The rendition and musical accuracy of the Anthem, is better in content and context than the current one. On this note, permit me at this juncture, to reproduce the Anthem to serve as a reminder and reflection: 

“Nigeria, We Hail Thee 

Nigeria we hail thee

Our own dear native land, 

Though travelling and tongue may differ 

In brotherhood we stand, 

Nigerians all, and proud to serve 

Our sovereign Motherland 

“Our Flag shall be a symbol 

That truth and justice reign, 

In peace or battle honour’d, 

And this we count as gain, 

To hand on to our children 

A banner without stain, 

“O God of creation, 

Grant this our one request, 

Help us to build a nation 

Where no man is oppressed, 

And so with peace and plenty Nigeria may be blessed.” 

All the Senators who contributed to the debate , supported the bill and called for its expeditious consideration and passage.

Senator Tahir Monguno ( APC Borno North ) , described the bill as apt and germane .

In his own contribution, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim (APC Ondo South ) , said the move made by the presidency to replace the current National Anthem with the new one was very apt and necessary. 

According to him , Nigeria , We Hail Thee , is far more inspiring and Nationalistic than Arise O Compatriots.

Senator Victor Umeh ( Labour Party , Anambra South), also supported the bill by declaring that the wordings in the current National Anthem are vague.

The bill was accordingly passed for second reading on  the strength of supports given it  by all the Senators who contributed to debate  on it , after which the President of the Senate , Godswill Akpabio, mandated the Senate Committees on Judiciary , Human Rights and Legal matters , Federal Character and Intergovernmental Affairs , to  make further legislative inputs on it and report back very soon .