Former Minister of Defence, General Theophilus Danjuma, Saturday blamed the leadership of the country for what he described as the near collapse of all sectors of the economy and the current security challenges.
Danjuma spoke in Zaria shortly after the traditional title of Jarmai Zazzau was conferred on him by the Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Idris, for his philanthropic gestures and role in uplifting education in Nigeria.
In Abuja, President Goodluck Jonathan offered his felicitations to Danjuma on the conferment of the traditional title on him, saying the former minister has made huge contributions towards community and institutional development in different sections of the country.
But the former minister lamented in his post-conferment speech that the entire national economy was in tatters. He said the fight against the Boko Haram insurgency could not be won by the use of strong-arm tactics in a country with a wide disparity between the rich few and the masses who can barely eke out a decent living.
Danjuma said Nigeria, in general, and the North, in particular, had never lacked politicians but regretted that what was in short supply were patriotic leaders who could give the nation a clear sense of direction.
Danjuma added that the present situation in the country called for sober reflection rather than resort to inflammatory statements and political tantrums ahead of the 2015 elections.
He said, however, that despite the many years of mismanaged opportunities and resources, the country could be brought back to the path of progress and rebuilt to achieve greatness, if there was peace and genuine reconciliation among the political leaders.
Jonathan, in a statement by his special adviser on media and publicity, Dr. Reuben Abati, said,
“The president believes that General Danjuma’s splendid career in the Armed Forces and public service of the Federation, as well as his colossal philanthropy and generosity to communities in all geopolitical zones of the country have ensured that he will be continually honoured and celebrated by an appreciative nation.”
The present recalled the former Chief of Army Staff’s recent donation of over N2 billion to the Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, for the construction of a new library, lecture hall, auditorium and administrative block and prayed God to grant him many more years of service to his fatherland