Senator Rochas Okorocha, representing Imo West Senatorial Constituency, has called on Nigerians to develop and imbibe national spirit.
This is in order to enhance patriotism, peaceful coexistence, build stronger institutions and nation.
Okorocha made the call in an address at an event, tagged: “Conversation with Owelle @59,”, on Monday in Abuja.
The event was organised by the Nigeria Union of Journalists, Federal Capital Territory Council, to honour the Senator as he clocked 59.
The former Imo State governor said: “The country has a population of over 200 million people, with vast land and effective human resources.
“But that yet, we are not where we ought to be in growth and development in the country.
“We have three types of citizens, the selfish ones, tribal ones and patriotic citizens.
“The selfish ones constitute about 70 per cent. Our problem is mismanagement of our resources and nearly absence of patriotic citizen.
“We have to quickly develop a national spirit which prices glory more than wealth, and honour better than life.
“It is a high spirit because it elevated more than low and vulgar consideration.”
According to Okorocha, the general spirit protects the weak and the indigents in the society, just as it is a noble one.
“This is what is lacking in the country, because, we have more of selfish and tribesmen than the patriotic citizens.
“If we have this national spirit, the nation would become strong and begin to command the economies of other countries,” Okorocha said.
He emphasised that until Nigerians truly imbibed the national spirit, ” even if you call for national conferences and whatever form of governance, it would not work.
“To get this spirit, we must develop a social arm of government,; we must develop the judiciary to be independent, powerful, strong.
“This is to be able to compel the selfish citizens to move up to patriotic category of citizenship.”
Also Speaking, Emmanuel Ogbeche, the Chairman, NUJ, FCT Council, congratulated Okorocha for attaining 59 years in good health.
“Your life as a philanthropist touching the lives of millions of people is worthy of emulation.
“Nigeria has about 11 million out of school children. If not for the Rochas Foundation, the figure would have been up to 14 million children.
“It is your heart of philanthropy that made the council to honour you today. You have given hope to a generation of children that would have been hopeless.
“I want to thank you for the support, and after this event, Nigeria will understand the man Owelle Rochas Okorocha,” Ogbeche said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that high point of the event was the presentation of a 12-minute video titled, “Owelle Rochas Okorocha.”
The union also doled out a birthday card and a plaque to the Senator.