Former Nigerian President emeritus, Dr Goodluck Ebele Jonathan has urged Nigerians not to despair in the face of impunity, persecution and maladministration noting that “anything evil cannot last for long.”
He said that it is better to be persecuted for doing the right thing than being associated with despicable conducts and antecedents.
Jonathan stated this at the 2018 new yam festival of the Obi of Obinugwu and Chairman, Igbo Traditional Rulers Forum, Eze (Dr) Cletus Ilomuanya in Orlu Council Area of Imo State, Tuesday.
The former president urged Nigerians to appreciate and always endorse goodness and character above parochial momentary interests.
“We must appreciate goodness even when threatened with persecution because evil doesn’t last for long. A leader must be prepared to face a lot of challenges at some point in life, which is what leadership often entails.”
He described the new yam festival of Obinugwu community as “a spectacular cultural showpiece with the potentials of a national event.”
Also speaking, the former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon Emeka Ihedioha described Jonathan as “a friend in need and a friend indeed.”
According to him, the former president remains a reference point in leadership in Africa, stressing that Jonathan has laid a lasting foundation for all other succeeding presidents to build upon.
Ihedioha commended the Obinugwu Community for their spirit of oneness and resilence.
“We associate ourselves with what former President Jonathan has said.
We made mistakes and have also learnt from our mistakes.
In his remarks, the Deputy Governor of Imo State, Prince Eze Madumere, dissociated himself from the persecution and injustice Eze Ilomuanya suffered in hands of the present Imo State governor, Rochas Okorocha.
Represented by a former Commissioner for works in the State, Ichie Best Mbanaso, the Deputy Governor noted that “Eze Ilomuanya is a good man. I am with him and the Obinugwu community because they did nothing wrong and that is why we are here to identify and celebrate this year’s new yam festival with them.”
While welcoming his guests, Eze (Dr) Cletus Ilomuanya described the new yam celebration as significant to the agricultural calendar of the community. He stated that August 14 every year is always set aside for this traditional festival which he said, they inherited from their forefathers.
The Monarch expressed gratitude to former President Goodluck Jonathan and other dignitaries from across the country who graced this year’s New Year festival of Obinugwu Community, pointing out that “it is an indication that Nigerians are one irrespective of linguistic, tribal and religious diversities.”