The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, says it is a commendable feat for Nigeria to attain age 61 as an independent nation in spite of its diversity.
Mustapha stated this in an interview with newsmen at the nation’s 61st Independence Anniversary celebration on Friday, in Abuja.
Mustapha said the current challenges facing the country was part of growth, adding all nations of the world had at one time or the other been confronted with such challenges.
He said that there was need to celebrate the country’s existence for 61 years, saying that there were certain countries that had not experienced the kind of challenges that Nigeria had experienced but had fragmented.
“For Nigeria to attain the age of 61, I think it is a commendable feat for our country that we have gotten to this point in spite of our diversities which is our strength in unity.
“In spite of the challenges that the country has gone through over the last couple of decades that we have exhibited and expressed the Nigerian resilience and the desire of our people to live in peace and harmony.
“So, I want to congratulate Nigerians for the attainment of the age of 61.
“Challenges are part of the growth of a nation because there are no countries that don’t have challenges even democracies that have existed in the last 300 years are still confronted with challenges and ours is not different,’’ he said.
SGF stated that the government recognised its responsibility to provide for the security and the welfare of the citizens, adding that the government was doing its best to create a better future for all.
He said that the current administration had achieved tremendous feat in the area of infrastructure.
“In the last couple of years, Nigerians have continued to perform credibly all over the world in different areas of human endaevour,’’ he added.
A student of Government Secondary School Kuje, in FCT, Philip Jonathan, urged government to pay more attention to education to secure a better future for the youths.
Jonathan, who was excited that he attended and witnessed the Nigeria’s 61st Independence Anniversary celebration, said he wa proud of his country, Nigeria.
He also called on the youths, especially students to remain focused irrespective of the current situation of the country, to make the nation a place in future.
“I feel excited because I have never participated in any occasion like this but to witness this, it is very exciting and I fell so proud of Nigeria.
“My expectation is that the government should put more effort helping all the students and also in providing all the facilities needed by the students and make Nigeria a better place and to improve on our economy.
“My message to my fellow student is that they should be very active and not look at what is happening, they focus on their future and make sure they make Nigeria a better place,’’ Jonathan said.
A student of Government Secondary School Wuse Zone 1, Rosemary Anyanwu, said it was an honour for her to be part of the nation’s independence celebration.
Anyanwu said that Nigeria as a country had many talented youths, urging the government to keep improving on all its programmes as well as encouraging teachers to do their job.
“It is a very big honour to be a part of the celebration of Nigeria at 61. As you can see, Nigeria has many talents, everyone in Nigeria has talent because Nigeria is a giant.
“My expectation from the government is that they should keep improving in whatsoever they are doing, they should keep encouraging students and the teachers.
“Even the ones that are not going to school, they should try and build cheaper schools for those so that everyone can have a bit of education,’’ she said. (NAN)