By Wale Ojo-Lanre

Kai!
Kai!
Lailai!
Never!

I say never!
I swear both by Sango and Ogun and other fiery spiritual agents that judges humans on this firmament; and I swear that
Never,
Not now,
Or in the nearest future,
No matter how it is;
No matter how bad or well that she treats me, I can never say or wish Nigeria, my country such a damnation or curse.

A beautiful country that God has given us!
Why should I curse my country?
A land full of opportunities and beautiful people.
I can never curse Nigeria or wish or use unprintable words to describe her; rather, as I sat on this wonderful Mountain of Fortune, located in Iyin Ekiti; with hundreds of Nigerian youths from all over the world, under the mobilization of
Discover Ekiti By Hiking Abanijorin Rock – a rock of fortune, which God has blessed Ekiti with!

A rock which has 7 caves; an under-the-rock tunnel; and inside its bowel is concealed a natural amphitheatre, which seats 450 people.

I strongly prayed for Nigeria; I wish her a resounding Happy New Year!

My country, Nigeria, I so much believe in you; I have hope for your entity!

Everything I have is you; you tossed me up and down, yet I am so much in love with you!

Most of us have dual citizenship, but I have you and you alone!

The majority of us have packed our children abroad; I have no cause or means to do that for any of my children. All my children are brought up and trained in Nigeria!

Some of us eat scholarships meant for indigents students, I have not abused that opportunity, either for myself or my children; I have never shared greedily out of the national cake!
No ill-gotten gain!
I have served you in many capacities, without abusing or engaging in nepotism.
I have never taken any contract; neither have I applied for one!
I have neither eaten any extra-perquisites of office; I have neither involved my wife, children or relations in positions.

My children or I have never benefitted unduly from any post I have so far occupied, either in form of contract, undue influence or official perks

My children are suffering too; I have two of them unemployed after having graduated some years ago from Nigerian universities, since I cannot bend the rule or manipulate undue influence to fix them.

Forget the fact that I have facilitated employment for others where I have work.

I solemnly believe that you will be great, but, Nigeria, I have also been praying – praying very hard that crude oil should dry up!

That crude oil is a curse rather than a blessing!
And because crude oil is available, it has distracted us from enhancing the other viable potentialities in you!

I also prayed that if oil dried up, we shall have the full course to develop Tourism, Arts and Culture, as many of the alternatives sources of your earnings!

Good morning Nigeria!
I can never wish you evil!
I can never do you evil!
I pray for you to have peace!
I pray for you to live long!
Welcome into a brand New Year
Nigeria, my great country, it shall be well with you!
It is well with your soul!

•Amb Ojo-Lanre, on Abanijorin Hill, Iyin Ekiti, cab be reached via +2348033490986

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