Nation Building: Searching for Transformational Leaders (3) By Dr O.E Bassey

Our Security, Our Peace by Dr. O. E Bassey 

“There is one sure-fire way to bring about instability, stagnation and descent to a system; such way is practically the encouragement of hatred and discrimination in a society. You allow these thrive, then peace is sent on exile.”

You can’t expect growth where there is no peace just as you can’t expect tolerance where there is no love. Lump these three together in a society, there is no gainsaying that all will smile.
What’s more in the equation of having these virtues pervasive is to find leaders who are ambassadors of them, hence influence others to toe the path.
When it comes to society, the people give meaning to it. The people provide substance to it. The people are the beginning and the end of any society. So in whatever transpires in a society, the people are crux to it.
This then dovetails into establishing the fact that for every good and bad thing that would spring up from a society, the people are the engineers of them – wittingly or unwittingly. Therefore, it is quite imperative that people are conscious of the roles they are to play in the mix of things as per the society they dwell in, especially knowing the fact that doing nothing brings something, doing something still brings something, so won’t you rather do the right thing so the right things can be brought to limelight? It is way better than folding your hands and doing nothing for something undesirable to happen?
Right from the leaders down to the followers, everyone in the society is expected to be a team player in seeing that the goal of sustainable development is achieved, else the loss gets to be suffered by everyone — mostly the led.
And in our country at this peculiar time, it is quite glaring that the keys to the sustainable development we desire are stacked in our ability to be loving and tolerant which bring about peace — how much more people we call our leaders.
Love: The truth is, any society devoid of love among its dwellers, such society is a hotspot – avoid it by all means. Love is the greatest, the bible says. Every other virtue you seek in life can only be derived on the platform of love. You lack love, you lack foundation You lack love, you lack substance. You lack love, you lack God, and what else is remaining of a man, let alone a society, when such a powerful factor cum virtue like love is found wanting? What else?
With love, you are able to go far. With love, you are able to work together, you are able to co-exist in harmony. Just like a quote says: “if you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together.” Every leader invested in growth and development would topple going fast for going far any day anytime, as such, must see to the fact that love among its citizens is at an optimal level.
What is Love?
Love is an act of seeing to the interest of another person. Love involves sacrifice, selflessness and care. Love is patient, love is kind, love does not envy, love does not boast, love is not proud, love is not rude, love is not self-seeking, love is not easily angered, love keeps no records of wrong, love does not delight in evil, love rejoices with the truth, love always protects, love always trust, love always hopes and preserves, love never fails, love does not boast, love does not envy.
A society whose people championed by their leaders demonstrate all these to themselves is a society primed for development.
A notch above love while incorporating love into its principles, tolerance is the virtue and value of seeing that another person is respected for whom they are and what they are. This is the act of understanding that the next person is different from you, with a different background from you. And when you bring such virtue to a country like Nigeria with a heterogeneous population, it becomes a must for us to embrace tolerance as both a national value and a personal virtue to see that development gets to be facilitated in our fatherland.
You would most likely feel bad and hostile to anyone who decides to discriminate against you being from a particular tribe in the country, who tries to turn you down because you have a tribal mark, who does not give you opportunities because you are a Christian, who refuse to accept your proposal because you do not speak his language. All these are the nuances attached to people found in a heterogeneous society like Nigeria and it must be stated that they do not mean they are less of a human; they are as human as you are, and the least you owe them are acceptance and respect for whom they are. When this is in place, being able to work together for a common good would set in, and the power of two has always and would always be greater than the power of one.
So for a society seeking development, the place of tolerance cannot be discredited – it is non-negotiable.
Peace: Simply, the offshoot of the aforementioned and the inevitable springboard to development, Peace can never surface if love and tolerance are not in place, neither can development be pervading where peace is non-existent.
Herein the formula is quite balance and established: put love and tolerance together, that equals to peace which raises to power of development.
Chances are next to naught that a society would ever see the light of development without love, chances are very slim that a society would ever luxuriate on growth without accepting people for whom they are and respecting them regardless of differences. There is one sure-fire way to bring about instability, stagnation and descent to a system; such way is practically the encouragement of hatred and discrimination in a society. You allow these thrive, then peace is sent on exile. But the moment you have people in a society — both from the leadership and the followership — looking out for the interest of others, accepting others for whom they are, respecting others’ values, personalities, likes and dislikes, sacrificing to see the growth of one another; the moment you have people in a system do these, that is the moment peace thrives, and when peace thrives, harmony comes to the mix, and people work in tandem tirelessly and intelligently to see that the necessary development that is sustainable is birthed. It is just automatic: peace mothers development.
So, having brought to light the genealogy of development, and how leaders are pivotal to the engendering of it, it is quite pertinent I implore you to go ahead and look out for these values and virtues in the crop of leaders you would be catapulting into power with your votes.
We can’t afford to go down another four years with these virtues gasping for a chance in the country. The change starts with what we do now!
2 Corinthians 13:11 ESV: Finally, brothers, rejoice. Aim for restoration, comfort one another, agree with one another, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.
Dr. Ofonime Emmanuel Bassey is a Security, Peace and Conflict Resolution Coach with decades of experience in the practice and promotion of Law Enforcement, Peace and Security through the Nigeria Police and the United Nations.
He is an advocate of Peace Leadership and Child Protection.
He has served and interacted at the top level management of the Nigeria Police as well as internationally as a United Nation’s Monitor/Mentor in Kosovo, Europe.
A professor of Peace Advocacy and Conflict Resolution, Dr. O.E Bassey is a certified United Nation’s Trainer, and currently the Director of ICOF Institute of Leadership, Peace and Conflict Resolution in Africa.
With his marks well-established in Peace Leadership both in Nigeria and Africa. Currently, he is the President, NISSI Safety Management Institute: An Institute of Peace Leadership.
Presently, he is spearheading a campaign tagged “The Next Peace Leaders”, a campaign that is billed to run from 2022-2023 with a target of training 37,000 young peace leaders.
For peace and security tips, consultations and trainings, reach him via:
Facebook: Dr. O.E Bassey
LinkedIn: Dr. O.E Bassey
Twitter: Dr. O.E Bassey
WhatsApp: +2347065828892

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