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Relegated & Rejected, Yet No Lesson Learned


Many times I have been shocked of responses I got from some people whenever I talk about the most important thing that demands concerted efforts, deliberate support and intentional investment – LEADERSHIP. A deputy director in one government agency, where my organization was seeking for a partnership to organize leadership programme for young people, said to me, “young man, don’t disturb these children about leadership for now; let them finish their school first. Who leadership help?” “Really”, I answered him. “Do you mean teaching the young people leadership is a disturbance, also not helpful, and not part of education?”, I asked him. “It is part of education, but not necessary for now, what will they use it for?”, the man replied me. That is when I knew we are really in trouble in this country called Nigeria. If a deputy director could vomit such a thing. I was burdened with several questions like, how did this man manage to attain the position of Deputy Director? Did he know that position of Deputy Director is a position of leadership? Did he know by being a Deputy Director, he’s supposed to be a leader? What does he teach to those under him? How’s he modeling those looking up to him?
You can now see why we are in trouble in this country. These are the people who make and implement government developmental policies for Nigeria nation. How can someone who lacks knowledge be placed in such a position?

There are several other people who hold similar opinion as this man. Many of this kind had told me, “as long as Nigeria is concerned, talking about leadership is a waste of time; that Nigeria cannot change”. By this perception, I realized many see Nigeria just a means not an end. They see Nigeria as a transit not a destination nor a home. But for me, whether Nigeria is a means or a transit, one thing important to me is that LEADERSHIP is critical in developing any human society. A height of a nation is determined by height of her leaders. A nation cannot grow more than her leaders. The joy people exert is dependent on the kind of persons they have in the positions of leadership. The scripture says, “when the righteous is in power, people rejoice; but when it’s wicked, the people groan.” By this scripture, it means everything rises and falls on leadership. When there’s bad persons in leadership positions, the result is bitterness, anger, hetred, violence, injustice and all sorts of evil. These are the evidences found in a society where people are in a groaning situation.

All the happenings today in Nigeria are the products of leadership failure. Leadership failure is visible in every sectors of Nigeria society, be it government, religious bodies, corporate bodies, Non-governmental organizations etc. Many private owned companies had folded because of failed leadership. Many religious bodies are in disarray as a result of failed leadership. Entire Nigerian system is in a helpless and hopeless state, fast going to complete collapse as a result of leadership failure. Yet, SOMEONE IS IGNORANTLY AND BLINDLY TELLING ME THAT TALKING ABOUT LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT IS GOOD, BUT NOT IMPORTANT FOR NOW. Then, what exactly is important? If there’s no Nigeria tomorrow, what do you think is the cause? It’s leadership failure. Don’t be surprised, in the next ten years, Nigeria may not be able to pay workers’ salary or naira be printed just to cover this. When this happens, naira will just be like ordinary paper without value. Because the value of any currency is in its purchasing power. If eventually this happens? What do you think is the cause? Leadership failure. In 70s, 1 naira was equal to 1.5 dollars, today, in 2021, 1 dollar is equal to 400 naira. What is the cause? Leadership failure. Today, there’s insecurity everywhere, people can’t sleep with their two eyes closed. Tensions and fears; terrorism and separatism everywhere. What’s the cause? Leadership failure.

The number one remedy is LEADERSHIP.
Number two remedy – LEADERSHIP
Number three remedy – LEADERSHIP.

Until we take serious LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT, we may end up turning this nation a jungle, a land of desolate, a history to tell.
But if you doubt me that leadership is not the problem and requires critical attention, then ask Dubai, they’ll tell you with good leadership, a desert can be turned a land of spring water, that’s why Nigeria president’s wife and her children have relocated there. Take a step further and ask Singapore, they’ll tell you with good leadership, a desert can be transformed a land of milk and honey. China has her story to tell you; today she’s your number one lender. Malaysia, Japan etc. they will all tell you it all started with good leadership.

IF THERE’S ONE INVESTMENT CRITICAL AT THE MOMENT, IT’S INVESTMENT IN LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT. That’s what we in the Pathfinders INET Africa do, developing and investing in the people through our leadership development Programmes.

If you want to plant a nation, plant men; to grow a nation, grow men. You don’t lead a nation or an organization, you lead the people and people grow the nation. You lead the people and the people grow the organization

Failure of Leadership is the worst disease any society would experience.

Written by
Chukwu Michael Chukwu,
Leadership Developer and Capacity Builder.



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