Former Head of State, chief Olusegun Obasanjo, Generals Yakubu Gowon and erstwhile foreign affairs minister, Maitama Sule presented differing views of the state of the nation at 50.
Gowon said the Federal Government’s plan of becoming one of the 20 strongest economies in the world in 2020 otherwise known as Vision 20:2020 would drive the nation’s growth in the next 50 years.
Obasanjo’s commendation came as Nigeria’s former Permanent Representative at the United Nations and Dan Mansanin Kano, Alhaji Maitama Sule, while noting that the country is endowed with enormous human and material resources , blamed the present crop of leaders for the woes of the country.
He said “there is the absolute need to have good leaders, with the fear of God, leaders who are concerned, who are committed; dedicated leaders and not rulers.”
Speaking with newsmen in Abuja, Gowon, who said the economic plan which derived its origin from the 3rd National Development Plan would be a panacea to the nation’s intractable problems.
The former military leader, who is best remembered for his insistence that the nation must remain one during the civil war, however, regretted that his administration had evolved development plans that would have taken the nation to the promised land if not for the truncation of his administration by the late General Murtala Mohammed.
He, however, noted that the present administration was now beginning to look in that direction. “Should there be serious attention to the 2020 vision,” he said, “Nigeria would be the better for it in the next 50 years.”