The Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, says the new Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, represents a new generation of bridge-builders in Nigeria.
Osinbajo was speaking against the backdrop of the Ooni’s outreach to different groups and institutions in furtherance of the unity of the country.
The vice president said this when the Ooni and his cabinet paid him a courtesy visit at the State House, Abuja on Tuesday.
He said that the cross-boundary relationships of the monarch were not only symbolic, but had greater implication for the future of the country.
“Some of what we have seen `Kabiyesi’ do, some of those steps he has taken, handshakes across prejudices, across traditional boundaries, a visit to the Alaafin of Oyo, and several other such important steps are not just symbolic.
“It is important to understand that they also have very deep implications for future relationships and for the way that our generation is perceived and also implications in the way that our country eventually shapes up.
“And I just want to commend you, Kabiyesi, for that foresight and for your great insight into leadership.”
Osinbajo noted that the monarch was an epitome of a new way of thinking which permeated not only the traditional institutions but also the circular world and other forms of leadership.
“The fact that he represents a new way of thinking and it is not just a generational way of thinking.
“It is a whole new concept in the way that we relate to power and authority and that we govern.
“And I think that he is one of those who have thought it fit to begin to express himself in a completely different way from what we had seen in the past.
“And this is not just about traditional rulership; it is also about circular leadership; it is also about leadership at every level.
“I think that one of the key things that we have learnt from leadership and one of the key leadership skills that he has taught, that his approach has taught us, is that you have to make contacts even with people and with authorities who in the past may have been considered adverse or adversaries one way or the other.”
The VP also commended what the monarch was doing with young people, his embrace of modern communication, as indications that a new generation had taken over.
He said the youth were encouraged by such disposition which would be a tribute to his foresight.
According to him, anyone who addresses the concerns of the young people who constitute more than 75 per cent of the population, must understand that it is not just about demographics but about the future of the country.
Osinbajo described the visit to one of his subjects as an honour to him (Osinbajo) and prayed God to grant the Ooni long life to be able to accomplish his good mission for the society.
The Ooni of Ife described the administration as a memorable one as it demonstrated “a new dawn for good leadership and a positive act of leadership” in the country.
He said his coronation was a divine calling which he would use to glorify the Almighty Creator.
He said he was particularly interested in the role the traditional institutions could play in nation building.
“Today I am here; I was warmly received by Mr President and Mr Vice President to talk progressively about what we can do as from the traditional aspect.
“Because we monarchs are much closer to the people, community relations, community development and how we can properly bridge the gap.
“Today is a good opportunity for me to appeal to we the youth because the throne I dedicated to the youth for us all to be patient with our leaders.
“They have very good plan for us, very positive plans.”
The monarch also urged the youth to support the leadership as it had shown commitment to the well- being of the country.
He advised Nigerians to think positively about the administration as he was convinced that patience would enable the people to benefit from the administration.
He said his mission was to build relationships between South and North as the country is one.
He prayed for peace in the country which according to him ushers in development in line with the mantra of the administration.
The monarch said Nigerian should not expect all from the leaders but rather compliment their efforts as Nigeria is a great nation bound to prosper. (NAN)
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