Posted by Friday Olokor | 12 April 2014 | 3,536 times
One interesting thing that is taking place at the on-going National Conference in Abuja is in the area of personality relevance. When some delegates speak, they exude a magnetic aura and command a deafening silence. There is a general keen interest to hear them speak and listen to their hypnotic language. But, for reasons only known to them, they have refrained from granting press interviews, even though they are news makers and sellers.
One of such notable figures who have elevated the status of debates in the confab is the Publisher/Editor-in-Chief of THISDAY Newspapers, Prince Nduka Obaigbena, who also doubles as the Chairman, Newspapers Proprietors Association of Nigeria (NPAN). This case played out on Tuesday, April 8, when he suggested the rebuilding of the nation’s middle class to fight extreme poverty. In his submission on the inaugural speech of President Goodluck Jonathan, Obaigbena stated that the prospects for true greatness could be uncovered if Nigeria takes another retrospective look into its structure and constitutional framework. He was corroborating recent World Bank report listing Nigeria among the countries with extreme poverty.
Obaigbena said the inefficient management of resources in the country brought about a sharp decline of the middle class. Who are the members of the middle class in question? He provided an answer: “In Nigeria, we are a proud people, we are proud nationalities contributing to world affairs. Our people represent some of the best of humanity and we do not recognise ourselves. The other day, Prof. Wole Soyinka got the Nobel Prize for Literature. He is being followed today by Chimanda Adiche; the other day Apple Computers bought its Apps from a Nigerian innovator; a few weeks ago, a Nigerian company, Oando, was able to raise $1.5 billion dollars in the global market. We are making strides, Aliko Dangote is building factories in Nigeria and he was named the richest blackman in the world.”
With this, we all know where Obaigbena belongs: He’s a man of the people and detribalised Nigerian whose patriotic spirit has never been in doubt. However, one factor that appears to be his strong point is “the 14 years of robust journalism.” He is said to have empowered over 10,000 Nigerians across ethnic, religious and tribal cleavages and is also credited with changing the face of journalism in the country (by whichever interpretation it is given).
Obaigbena steals the show whenever he speaks as delegates listen with concentrated attention. Bravo, the Prince of Owa-Oyibu...
•Olokor, an Abuja-based journalist covering the national Conference, posted this on his Facebook timeline. Photo shows Nduka Obaigbena.
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