28 February 2115

My fellow Nigerians,

I am profoundly humbled that you have elected me to serve as the 16th president of our beloved republic. This is a shining moment in the life of any man and affirmation of our democratic existence. From my heart, I say thank you.

Whether you are Batified, Atikulated, Obidient, Kwankwasiyya, or have any other political affiliation, you voted for a better, more hopeful nation and I thank you for your participation and dedication to our democracy.

You decided to place your trust in the democratic vision of a Nigeria founded on shared prosperity and one nurtured by the ideals of unity, justice, peace and tolerance. Renewed hope has dawned in Nigeria.

We commend INEC for running a free and fair election. The lapses that did occur were relatively few in number and were immaterial to the final outcome. With each cycle of elections, we steadily perfect this process so vital to our democratic life.

Today, Nigeria stands tall as the giant of Africa. It shines even brighter as the continent’s biggest democracy.

I thank all who supported my campaign. From President Buhari who adeptly led my campaign as its chairman, to my Vice Presidential Candidate, Senator Kashim Shettima.

To the progressive governors of our party and this nation, to the party leadership, to our loyal party members. I owe you a debt of gratitude. To the entire campaign organization, I thank you sincerely.

I thank my loving wife and dear family whose support was ceaseless and inspiring. Without you, this victory would not be possible.

I am grateful to Almighty God. By His mercy, I was born a son of Nigeria and through His sublime purpose I find myself the victor of this election. May He grant me the wisdom and courage to lead the nation to the greatness He alone has destined for it.

Finally, I thank the Nigerian people for their abiding belief in our democracy. I shall be a fair leader to all Nigerians. I will be in tune with your aspirations, charge up your energies and harness your talents to deliver a nation that we can be proud of.

To my fellow candidates, former VP Atiku, former governor Kwankwaso, former governor Obi and all others, I extend the hand of friendship. This was a competitive, high-spirited campaign.

You have my utmost respect.

Political competition must now give way to political conciliation and inclusive governance.

During the election, you may have been my opponent but you were never my enemy. In my heart, you are my brothers.

Still, I know some candidates will be hard put to accept the election results. It is your right to seek legal recourse. What is neither right nor defensible is for anybody to resort to violence. Any challenge to the electoral outcome should be made in a court of law, and not in the streets.

I also ask my supporters to let peace reign and tensions fade. We ran a principled, peaceful and progressive campaign. The aftermath of our campaign must be as benign.

Yes, there are divisions amongst us that should not exist. Many people are uncertain, angry and hurt; I reach out to every one of you. Let the better aspects of our humanity step forward at this fateful moment. Let us begin to heal and bring calm to our nation.

Now, to you, the young people of this country, I hear you loud and clear. I understand your pains, your yearnings for good governance, a functional economy and a safe nation that protects you and your future.

I am aware that for many of you Nigeria has become a place of abiding challenges limiting your ability to see a bright future for yourselves.

Remodeling our precious national home requires the harmonious efforts of all of us, especially the youth. Working together, we shall move this nation as never before.

My running mate, Vice President-elect Shettima, and I understand the challenges ahead. More importantly, we also understand and deeply value the talent and innate goodness of you, the Nigerian people. We pledge to listen and to do the difficult things, the big deeds, that put us on the path of irreversible progress. Hold us firmly to account, but please give us a chance first.

Together, we shall build a brighter and more productive society for today, tomorrow and for years to come.

Today, you have given me the greatest honor you can bestow on one man.

In return, I will give you my utmost as your next president and commander-in-chief. Peace, unity and prosperity shall be the cornerstones of the society we intend to build. When you gaze upon what we shall accomplish in the coming years, you shall speak with pride at being a Nigerian.

I thank you all.

God bless you all.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.


The Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, on October 26, 2022, announced that new Naira notes would be introduced to replace the 200, 500, and 1,000 Naira notes.

Emefiele said the redesign notes will take effect from Thursday, December 15, 2022, and existing notes would cease to be  legal tender by January 31, 2023.

Unfortunately, between the introduction date of the redesigned naira notes and the deadline, not many Nigerians had seen the new notes or accessed them, hence the extension of deadline for naira swap to February 10.

The policy which has received both negative and positive comments from Nigerians has been heavily criticised for the poor timing as the people now groan under hardship.

It is no longer strange to see unmanageable queues at Automated Teller Machines, ATM,  customers rising as early as 2am to have vantage spots on the line and ended up with less than N5,000 notes as take home after 6hours.

The riotous situation looks like the Stone Age experience. Citizens who are unable to access either the new or old naira notes are suffering untold hardship. Most of the affected persons are exhibiting a cocktail of frustration, anger and disappointment. In some areas, people are exhibiting wild, weird and even absurd behaviours to compel the banks to give them money no matter how little to survive the hard times.

The financial crises caused by this unguarded policy in the last few weeks are uncalled for. Not only has the naira redesign cum cash swap  resulted in scarcity of local currency or cash withdrawal limitations, which Nigerians have not experienced before,  the masses now have taste of hunger even when they have hundreds of thousands of naira in their bank accounts. 

Before now, it used to be the foreign currencies in the black market, Nigerians now buy their own local currencies with the same naira, as getting little cash to make purchases become more difficult than getting visas for overseas trip! 

The queue at the banks ATMs is endless. The struggle is energy sapping. People spend most part of their productive time at the banks, only to get as little as #2000 or nothing. Those who can go through the pain of waiting for a long time before getting cash now sell to those who can’t sacrifice their time.

Another set of merchants cashing out on this disturbing situation are the Point Of Sale, POS operators who are exploiting the cash crunch. To get N,5000 from an Operator, people pay between N700-N1000, depending on the naira merchant or POS operator. 

Small businesses have been negatively affected, with small enterprises closing down temporarily due to inaccessibility of cash. The ripple effect is unimaginable,  because, many of these traders run their businesses through loans acquired from microfinance banks. Some pay back monthly while others service their loans weekly. What happens when  the lenders come for their money with interests?

Also, many local suppliers don’t have banking culture but deal in cash. The cash crunch implies collapse of their businesses. The list is simply endless;  Mobility through public transport, petty purchases, airtime, TV subscriptions, groceries and other food items are done with cash. 

Videos of horrible happenings at the banks are in the social media,  men and women going naked to prove the urgency in their cash need, their hard earned money. This is not government grants! Elders weeping their hearts out like babies. 

If you ask around, Nigerians would never imagined that such days will come, when  able bodied and working class citizens will   experience difficulties in accessing their money. Beggars must be close to hell in their daily experiences.

Assistance to beggars in major Nigerian cities has always been in lower Naira denominations, so it is assumed that beggars were always in abundance, supplied. Petty traders, sometimes go to these beggars to get them for the lower denominations, for trading. 

The cash crunch caused by the Nigerian Central Bank’s Naira swap policy has changed the narrative,  as the beggars wait in vain for the crumbs that refuse to drop.

They sit on the pedestrian sidewalks at various locations in Lagos. They stretch their hands to beg for money, while their mouths mutter different sing-songs in their local language, in sync with one another. Crippled, blind and aged, they are all united by similar fate: they are all beggars. While some of them wear oversized clothes, the ones whose clothes sit well on them look unkempt. 

They flash at you, teeth tainted yellow with kola-chewing. A closer observation shows that the men sit some distance away from the women. Obviously, for religious reason! While some of their children sit busily to finger leftover foods, others hold, by hands, their blind parents. 

They now groan in lack, hunger and more hardship. Many of them get lesser wads of cash than they used to. Emefiele’s policy has taking its toll on them.

Musa Danladi is a beggar at Ijesha, Surulere. He reveals that people who used to give him and his friends alms do not do so anymore.

“I am tired of hunger. I initially thought I was going to die. Every one stopped sending help to us almost at the same. I am crippled, I can’t work. Nobody will employ me”

Fatima Toure couldn’t share her thoughts audibly. She tried to put words together amidst tearful eyes. Apparently, she and her aged mother didn’t plan for the unpleasant experience. She kept pleading ,if the government can take decisions to ameliorate their situation.

For blind Usman Said in Olodi-Apapa, life seems to be unfair. His parents were killed by insurgents in Yobe state. He lost his sight on the same day, through an attack. ” I got to know about the CBN policy through my friend who is an okada rider. We will be happy if it can be reversed because we don’t get financial aid anymore. We were told that government is against people carrying cash around. We plead for mercy. We are Nigerians “

If able-bodied men are lamenting hunger and anguish,  the situation of the beggars are better imagined. Men, women,  traders, students, beggars etc are lamenting their pains this season, it is hoped that the government will reconsider the policy or find a way ameliorate impact of the policy on all Nigerians.


Our beloved country, Nigeria will celebrate her 62nd independence anniversary on October 1, 2022, though the country is heavily bedeviled with crises.

Sixty-two years ago, there were celebrations across the length and breadth of Nigeria.  People rejoiced at the prospect of this new nation – a nation born with heavy birth pangs and the struggles of leaders of the time to give freedom to their people. The founding fathers had big dreams for this nation, they were proud to be Nigerians and had great hope for the future.

Six decades after, there is more of retrogression than progression with the present crop of administrators pursuing personal gains over common good. The handlers of national affairs look clueless in managing practically all sectors of the economy.  Every regime seems to be worse than the previous ones. History taught us that in the beginning, it was not so. Where and how we got it wrong as a nation should be a focus of national dialogue if we rise beyond tumbling flood threatening to sweep away the labour of the past heroes.  This is definitely not the country, the British handed over to the fathers who fought for  the independence. The labour of our heroes past is gradually going into the drains, if not in vain, so much that one begins to question the need for independence.

Giving an insight into how the British governed Nigeria in his book, “There Was A Country”, Chinua Achebe writes “The British governed their colony of Nigeria with considerable care. There was a very highly competent cadre of government officials imbued with a high level of knowledge of how to run a country. This was not something that the British achieved only in Nigeria; they were able to manage this on a bigger scale in India and Australia. The British had the experience of governing and doing it competently…I recalled the day I travelled from Lagos to Ibadan and stayed with Christopher Okigbo that evening. I took off again the next morning, driving alone, going all the way from Lagos to Asaba…that was how it was in those days. One was not consumed by fear of abduction or armed robbery.” Those were the days when people could sleep with their two eyes closed and society had not been invaded by criminal elements in different shades. Indeed there was a country! 

Now we have come to understand the reality, that gaining independence was not enough without good leadership to steer the wheel of progress. Nigeria in its present frame has shown poverty of leadership, which is the bane of its problems. 

Unemployment is on the rise. Economic hardship is noticeable. Indices of growth and development are increasingly on the decline. Insecurity has worsened, bandits and gun men have become untouchable. The country is divided, many people are very poor. Every now and then, Nigerians disown their country with so much hatred, calling their motherland unprintable names. While people of means are seeking better lives overseas for themselves and families, others want a relief from untold hardship. 

These problems notwithstanding, Nigeria has undoubtedly made noticeable socio- economic progress, at least since 1999 when it returned to democracy after years of military interregnum.

Telecommunications in the country had grown substantially with the advent of mobile phones.

Despite the challenges in the education sector like poor funding, ASUU strike etc, Nigeria boasts of about 262  higher institutions, arguably the largest tertiary education sector in Africa. Millions of graduates are released annually, creating the most educated workforce on the continent. However, the energy of this mostly young ones need to be properly channelled.

On the whole, Nigeria is in dire need of a forward looking leader, who is also a unifier. A leader who can harness the available human and material resources for the peace and progress of the country. A leader who will make terrorism and banditry become a thing of the past. A leader who is sound physically and mentally. A leader who can recreate economically viable nation that will be the envy of all. A selfless leader who can restore our lost glory. 

As we approach the 2023 elections, let all well meaning Nigerians put aside ethnic and religious sentiments to elect the right candidates at the polls. Collecting stipends from incompetent politicians for “stomach infrastructure” to vote for them will lead to no where. Any decision at the elections next year will affect the country positively or otherwise for another four years. Enough of bad leadership.  Nigeria can be great again!

Akinyemi Seun

(c) Globetelly


Japa” is a Yoruba slang that could represent leaving a place hurriedly or running away as fast as anyone can. The trending term by Nigerians, especially young people describes leaving the borders of the country for greener pastures overseas.

From finding a new career path to seeking a new lease of life, there seems to be no end to the reasons why Nigerians leave the country.

Some people travel for the sake of education, while others leave the country due to employment offers and the opportunity to relocate their families abroad.

Nigeria is regarded as the giant of Africa. With massive population, being oil producer and with very large economy, she ranks top among comity of African nations.

Despite these advantages, good leadership and managerial skills seems not to find expression in the decisions of officials at the helm of affairs.

Insecurity still remain a hydra headed demon the nation battles with as Nigerians still complain of banditry and kidnapping. These  heinous activities in  certain parts of the country have resulted death, loss of properties and homelessness for thousands. 

While these situations scare lots of average individuals to make alternative plans, many middle-class Nigerians are also heading overseas, hoping for a better environment to secure their future.

Prominent in the list of those who have relocated is the winner of the sixth edition of the now-rested Big Brother Africa, Karen Igho-Rakos.

Ms Karen shot into the limelight after winning the Big Brother Africa reality show in 2011.Popular artiste, Adekunle Gold has also left the country, though his reasons are shrouded in secrecy. 

Fred Acho, a banker is looking forward to jetting out of the country soon after he lost his job with a new generation bank during the company’s downsizing.

“This country has no regard for hardworking people. The government doesn’t provide enabling environment for business to thrive, the private sector is all about nepotism. Imaging all my years of labour, yet they ask me to leave just like that. I have started the process. Leaving this country is the best thing to do”. He said.

For 38 years old Adewale Oladun, a computer engineer and resident of Texas, US since 2019, assisting other Nigerian youths to achieve their dreams of relocating abroad gives him joy.

“Nigeria has failed the youths. I don’t blame whoever wants to leave the country. You can’t sleep with two eyes closed anymore. I am giving support to as many as need my help to fly out. No job, no food e.t.c. This is no more the Nigeria of our dreams” said Oladun

Tunmise Alademehin went as far as selling the only building bequeathed to her by the late parents. She laments the increase in kidnapping and banditry activities in the country. She disclosed that her neighbour was abducted and later killed, though ransom of #5,000,000 was paid.

” I am tired of waking up to news of terror daily. I lost my parents just two years ago to motor accident and it is too early to for me to go and join them. I had to sell the only property my parents left behind to fund my trip. The other day, a neighbour down the street was taking away by unknown gun men. They demanded for #10,000,000 as ransom, but just because the man’s family only raised half of it, they killed him and still collected the money, and nobody is talking about it”. She said

However, with the many challenges confronting the country at the moment, running away completely from our fears may not be the best solution. It behoves on all stakeholders, particularly the youths to rise up and be intentional in the quest of seeing better days ahead. There is  a glimpse of hope for Nigeria, with the coming elections in 2023. All hands must be on deck, so that credible and forward looking candidates can be elected to steer the wheel of the country.

Akinyemi Seun

(c) Globe telly