Happy Birthday President Jonathan
The best President in Nigeria’s history, in my opinion, is Goodluck Jonathan. He identified the single biggest problem in Nigeria, illiteracy and addressed it by building 165 Almajiri schools, and 14 new universities (13 built from the scratch and one, the Police College, Wudil, Kano, upgraded to a full university.)
He was and is entirely detribalised. That is why he did not focus on development in his state or region. Some people mock him for this. But that is a father’s heart. You spread your love equally. You have no favourite child.
I remember once when we were at London’s Heathrow, and the Nigerian High Commission sent a car to pick President Jonathan up. I was waiting to pick a taxi to join him at his destination, when he said ‘don’t be silly’, and shifted from what we call the owner’s corner in Nigeria, for me to seat, he sat on the other side. Which other Nigerian leader can be that humble?
The single largest infrastructure project ever built in Nigeria is the 187KM Abuja-Kaduna railway. President Jonathan built it. And today, that is what is saving the North from kidnappers along Abuja-Kaduna road.
Humility is often seen as weakness. But in hindsight, Nigerians can now see that what they thought was weakness, was actually strength under control. Herdsmen were afraid under Jonathan. Bandits were unknown. Yes, we had Boko Haram, but they knew they would be devastated when caught, rather than being rehabilitated.
And after the Presidency, Dr Jonathan has been going around Africa to inject his peace serum in many an African nation, as the Face of Democracy in Africa.
This man gave Nigeria her highest ever increase in life expectancy since records were kept. From 49.7 years in 2010 to 54 years in 2015.
God used President Jonathan to better Nigeria when our nation was bitter. I am so proud of you sir. Happy 63rd birthday, my friend and mentor. God bless you sir!