Osinbajo: A new Nigeria is within reach 

Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo has expressed optimism that Nigeria’s challenges can be put behind and a thriving country can be achieved. 

According to a statement by his spokesperson, Laolu Akande, the Vice-President expressed his confidence in the country’s potential while representing his principal, President Mohammadu Buhari at the virtual launch of “Imagine Nigeria”. Nigerians have questioned the unusual quiet of the Vice-President since he lost his bid for the ruling APC’s presidential ticket on June 8, 2022, a sharp contrast to his activity-filled schedule in the period leading to the party primaries. 

What is “Imagine Nigeria”? 

Imagine Nigeria is an initiative of the Federal Government, in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), with the objective of answering the question, “what it would take to transform Nigeria?”. The initiative details the thoughts of contributors in a report. “It is a process of reflection and discussion by all Nigerians, especially young Nigerians on what the future of our country should look like”, Osinbajo said, adding that “the pillars of change and the entire report are only the beginning of the imagining process”. 

What’s in the report? 

The report grouped measures to address the country’s challenges under “five pillars of change”: Build a Culture of Innovation; Catalyze a Green Economy; Build trust; Facilitate a National Narrative, and Lead Africa. Reiterating that the task cannot be left to the government, Osinbajo said, “from here on it will now be up to us all – civil society groups, public and private sector think-tanks, professional and vocational associations, socio-cultural and political groups, to open up dialogues and conversations”.

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 Complementing the Vice-President’s comments, the Minister of Finance, Budget, and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, said that transforming the country is no longer the prerogative of government or a select few. “The launch of the project [Imagine Nigeria] as a collective reflection is an excellent opportunity for Nigerians to come together to define the national agenda,” she said.