Nigeria was not created by colonial masters – Bolaji Abdullahi


It is wrong for Nigerians to support the notion that the country was an idea initiated and nurtured by past colonial masters like Lord Lugard, former Minister of Sports and Youth Development, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi has said.
While asking Nigerians to preach and promote peace and unity, Abdullahi who went down memory lane submitted that there had been relationship between pre-colonial ethnic institutions in the country before the arrival of the colonial masters and prior to the  amalgamation of the Southern protectorate and  the Northern  Protectorate  in 1914.
Abdullahi also asserted that almost all the countries of the world were “created” by some people adding that it will therefore be inappropriate to refer to the birth of Nigeria and its existence as ‘Mere Geographical Expression’.
The former minister make the observation while delivering his keynote address at the Lecture/Awards event organized by the Correspondents’ Chapel of the Kwara State chapter of NUJ. He spoke on the topic ‘New Journalism: Traditional Ethics Versus Modern Professionalism’.
Abdullahi who noted that the new media appeared to assume the positioned of the fifth estate of the realm also submitted that rather than considering it as a threat, journalists in the country should use social media as important tool to improve on their practice.
He described the advent of new media as democratization of mass communication and that it has given way for ‘self-communication’ adding that everybody has these days turned a journalist.
He warned that leaked  memos promoted on social media portends dangers while also lamenting that governance has been reduced to ‘beauty parade’ with  political office holders only getting obsessed with looking good on social media and not bothered about getting dividends of democracy delivered.
Giving his acceptance speech, an award recipient , Alhaji Yakubu Gobir who is a Kwara State APC stalwart  noted that  the  advent of social media does not only pose  threats to the practice of journalism but also other professions. He said it should however be used as important tools by journalists to better their practice.
PDP Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Prince Mackson Oladiran Odeyemi who also received an award thanked the organisers for honouring him  and noted that  the award  will spur him  on to greater efforts to contribute to nation building project.
In his welcome speech, Chairman, Correspondents’ Chapel, Alhaji AbdulHakeem Garuba who gave reasons for coming up with the idea of honouring distinguished Nigerians and  some members of the chapel canvassed for the return of history to the classroom and secondary schools in particular.
Members of the Correspondents’ Chapel; Elder Stephen Oni,  Mr. Oluseyi Da Silva,  Mr. Yinka Owolewa and Mr. Femi  Akobi were all awarded for entries submitted for the competition with a cash price of N50,000 each.
At the event was the Kwara state Commissioner of Police, Mr Kayode Egbetokun, Alhaji Kunle Akogun, Alhaji Billy Adedamola, Alhaj Razaq Gidado, Alhaji Mas’ud Adebimpe and the Kwara state PDP Chairman, Hon Kola Shittu among others.

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