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Ahead of the presidential inauguration of the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the president of Epe Ogunmodede Club in Lagos State, Barrister Omodele Ibrahim, has urged the former Lagos State governor to resuscitate national orientation programmes that will further entrench patriotism among Nigerians.
The legal luminary, who spoke in Epe town, averred that the critical role of national orientation to cement patriotic values is practiced globally and is potent in advancing Nigeria, the giant of Africa’s progress and international influence.
He disclosed that as the nation ushers in a new era under the leadership of President-elect Tinubu, the calls for the revival of national orientation programmes have grown louder.
Recognising the indispensable link between patriotism, national development, and globalisation, he opined that citizens of like-minds were hopeful that the incoming administration would prioritise initiatives that reinforce national identity and values.
Barrister Omodele stressed that in an increasingly interconnected world, the power of patriotism cannot be underestimated since it serves as the adhesive that binds a diverse nation together, fostering a deep sense of belonging, and propelling citizens towards a shared vision of progress.
“By instilling a strong sense of national pride, orientation programmes can enhance social cohesion, promote inclusivity, and bridge societal divides, paving the way for a more prosperous and united nation.
“Through education, engagement, and awareness campaigns, these programmes empower citizens to actively participate in the democratic process, contribute to the betterment of their communities, and uphold the nation’s values.
“This renewed commitment to civic duty and responsible citizenship can catalyze grassroots movements, fueling social innovation, and spurring development initiatives from the bottom to top,” he said.
Describing patriotism as the resplendent flame that ignites the soul, uniting hearts with a shared purpose, and guiding people towards the luminous path of unity, courage, and love for their land, the Alakoso of Epe Kingdom is convinced that the President-elect has an unprecedented opportunity to reignite the flame of patriotism and lead the nation towards a brighter future.
He added that for the spirit of patriotism to thrive, collaborations with civil society organisations (CSOs), media outfits, and local communities, which would further amplify the reach and effectiveness of the orientation programmes, should be employed.
“I suggest that the internalisation of the national anthem as a focal point of every Nigerian to engender a sense of national identity and belonging. In effect, you are first and foremost a Nigerian before you are a Yoruba, Igbo, or Hausa. This would establish an enduring legacy for generations to come,” he said.
Barr. Omodele further averred that in the current era marked by rapid globalisation, the efficacy of a strong national identity will serve as the foundation for international engagement and influence.
He noted that by fostering a deep love for their homeland, Nigerian citizens become ambassadors of their nation’s values and culture abroad.
This sense of national pride, he believes, not only strengthens diplomatic ties but also attracts global investment and fosters a positive international image, contributing to the overall economic growth and development of the country.