. Wants attention paid to security issues 

By Bianca Iboma-Emefu 

Former Nigeria Minister of External Affairs, Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi yesterday called on the government to re-evaluate the nation’s domestic affairs and equally address security issues confronting the country.

He explained that the uncertainties of the Russian – Ukraine war has strained our economy and pushed more households into poverty as a result of the rising cost of living.

He made the observations at 2nd International Lecture Series titled: “Competing Narratives on The Russian -Ukraine war” organized by the Department of History and International Studies Lagos State University (LASU).

 Prof. Akinyemi, who was a minister of external affairs from 1985 to 1987, under the regime of General Ibrahim Babangida, recommended the Federal Government strengthen the security system tackle security threats from other countries as part of the destablization agenda. 

He noted: “We need to tackle and secure the internal security architecture of our country. Nigerian troops are good if they are well funded, equipped and protected. We must be prepared fully.”

The former minister explained that agricultural production requires the critique of the social organisation of agricultural production, with focus on issues relating to mobilisation of labour, gender, and land tenure. 

“We ought to increase agricultural production and warehouse them because an hungry nation is an angry nation.

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“Besides, the devious geopolitical dynamics that triggered the Russia-Ukraine conflict in the first place, countries several miles away can feel the pinch on local economies. It is for this reason that Nigeria should show more pragmatic interests in the crisis, know where it stands in the power dynamics and with foresight, begin to make preparations to address emerging fallouts of the war,” he stated.

He advised the youths to take back their country by fighting for their corner, adding, ‘we didn’t get what we had then in a platter of Gold.I lost a brother in the struggle for democracy.  My brother was in the army,he died at aged 45 because he was prepared to make the sacrifice.

General Sani Abacha was hunting for me. I could have lost my life and not be here. Young people need to make sacrifice, you can’t achieve anything on a platter of gold. Fight for your place so we can have a better Nigeria,” he observed.

Prof Akinyemi identified the major causes of the Russian -Ukraine war, which included historical antecedent of events, socialism,status,China’s emergence,myths,engineers of the competition, nuclear weapons/war, agreement among other issues that caused the war, which might lead to world war three if peace is not achieve.”

He reeled out the impacts of the war as  economic hardship as Ukraine cannot export flour, wheat and has also affected the nation’s economy and other parts. 

In his remarks,  the Head of Department (H.O.D), History and International Studies, Prof. Adewunmi Falode, said apart from the academic impact and the recognition it’s would give the university, Nigerian must  understand that war do not have gains but rather destructions, noting, “even the person who started the fight cannot predict it’s outcome.”

Falode advised that Nigerians should view the war as an opportunity to learn the lessons of global power play. 

His words:”As war-beaten Ukrainians and Russians face existential challenges, it has become clear that states are more concerned about interests rather than about persons, even as the more powerful nations are apprehensive about their power.”