Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), has urged Nigerians to resist forces that attempt to split rather than unite the country.
This, he claims, will enable Nigerians to pay tribute to the memories and sacrifices of our forefathers.
Bello provided this advice during the FCT Archives and History Bureau’s “Celebrating Our Heroes Past” exhibition and symposium to commemorate Nigeria’s 61st independence anniversary.
The Minister, who was represented at the event by Mr Adamu Kusherki, Director, Office of the Minister, said the topic is extremely appropriate because it no doubt strives to raise awareness of the founding fathers’ actions of selflessness and sacrifice.
His words ; “Nigeria today, sits on a foundation forged from the ideals of unity, strength and a deep sense of national pride. These ideals were mooted and exemplified by our founding fathers and which, over the years, have propelled our country to greatness.
“We owe a duty to these national heroes to keep their dreams alive by upholding these ideals, especially as we now confront opposing and misguided elements seeking to undo what has taken 6 decades of our collective efforts to build.
“There is the need to join President Muhammadu Buhari and the majority of Nigerians in standing firm against forces that seek to divide, rather than unite us and honour the memories and sacrifices of our past heroes.
“As we continue the process of building a strong, virile and prosperous nation of which we are all desirous, it is important that we follow in the footsteps of the men and women who stood firm in face of colonialism and oppression to lay the first stone upon which our country now stands”, he stressed.
Bello also urged the Archive and History Bureau to intensify its efforts in telling the story of our past heroes beyond the photo exhibitions and intellectual engagements on special occasions such as this.
Saying, It is imperative that as many people as possible are made to understand the history of our great nation and appreciate why we need to forge ahead as an indivisible, united, strong and proud Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Earlier in his address of welcome, Director FCT Archives & History Bureau, Mr. Peter Chukwukelu said
this is the hub of record-keeping, as it’s sacred. Everything that has happened, you will see them here.
He said , “What is lacking right now is the digitalization , and we are going to make a case for the digitalization of FCT Archives, so that we put it on the world map, and people can access it from every corner of the world. This is our aim and mandate, which we will surely realise.
“But it’s once we have the funds, we can make a case for it. In the next year’s budget, the digitalization of FCT Achieves should be included in it. And it’s not only about making it to be on the world space, it would even bring Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) for the government.
Yes, when we do it, we will have money to do things in FCT, because it will be one of the biggest sources of IGR, that’s the plan.
He however attributed the delay in coming up with the digitalization proposal to scarce resources.
You know there are a lot of programmes and projects chasing after our scarce resources.
So it’s already before the authorities- my principles, and they are giving it serious consideration. So there is no delay, as I just came here like two years ago.
So we are doing what we can do, but I can assure you that in the next one to two years this place will be digitalis.
Meanwhile, Prof. Andrew Zamani , who gave the anniversary talk proposed image laundry to preserve patriots for public to access them.
He hinted that, Nigeria must work on our reward system, saying, heros who deserved to be honoured and recognised promptly.
Zamani further stated that, those who did well in civilized world are recognised and motivated almost immediately, this will help them to build more sense of responsibilities and patrotisim and will always be ready to sacrifice more.