Nigeria Presidential Election – Pat Utomi Went Missing and Why We Endorsed Him A Year Ago

Yes, we endorsed Pat Utomi last year. But today, he has faded in the political bookmakers and we give his position to Jonathan.May 2010 Endorsement of Utomi – Next year, Nigerians will go to the poll to elect their leaders. Increasingly, our challenges are accumulating because our leaders have not tacked them with the ‘fierce urgency’ they deserve.

There are many people vying for the highest office of the land- The Presidency. Among them include IBB, Orji Uzor Kalu, Buhari, Pat Utomi and possibly Jonathan Goodluck, the current President. Excluding IBB, I will be open to help any of these fellow citizens craft a technology policy that can put Nigeria on the path of progress. Simply, IBB lacks leadership qualities and the best he can do is to rule and never lead.

Pat Utomi is my choice for those that have declared for this job. He possesses the intellectual rigor and business experience that Nigeria needs to invent itself. I have always seen nations as equivalent of corporate entities where innovation and competitive capabilities do not happen by chance.  In the global innovation economy where knowledge has emerged as a key factor for competition, who occupies Aso Rock, Nigeria’s seat of power matters.

Utomi is the one that has provided a vision on what he plans to do. He communicates clearly and not playing the politics of money-bags. Just visit his campaign site and you will read his plans. He tells you what he plans to do and he is accessible. He is engaging and is arguably someone that will restore Nigeria to its rightful position in Africa and indeed the world.

He is a leader we can be proud to engage other world leaders like David Cameron, Barrack Obama, etc. He can prepare us for a post-petroleum era with his understanding of economics and business. This man has lead company Boards, founded companies, and does not need Nigerian money.

He is closest to the paradigm in developed world where they excel in private sector and then join government to help their nations. Utomi is humble, simple and will lead Nigeria with dignity, honor and integrity.

In 2002, just two years after NYSC, I applied to be a lecturer in Lagos Business School. My desire was to be a student of Utomi while working in his team. Sure, I was inexperienced, but they could not doubt my passion and intellectual zeal.  Inviting me for an interview under Prof Albert Alos in a seven-man panel was memorable.

They began the interview with this question: “can you teach Pascal Dozie, your boss?” I was a young banker in Diamond Bank and certainly was not in a position to teach one of Africa’s business legends. I looked at them and said: “Dr Dozie is a legend and I remain his student. No, I cannot teach him”. They told me that they needed experienced business people.

As I walked out of the panel, I saw Prof Utomi and realized that I would not be meeting him daily as I had planned.

After few days, LBS sent me a letter. In that letter, they appreciated my confidence, but regretted that they could not give me the job. So, I lost out to work with Utomi.

If Nigeria is honest with its quest to develop and join the league of emerging economies, Utomi is the right candidate. No argument about this except that in Nigeria we play chess with our futures.

Utomi has the capacity to rally the nation in honesty, hard work and raise our imaginations beyond where we are today and move us to believe in ourselves and create the tools to make us build our nation. He is someone whose goals will not just be to keep government running, but one who can help the nation dream a bigger, larger and glorious vision that generations of Nigerians will unite for.

Utomi is that man who can create a society to engage our brightest minds in government by evolving a new political system designed to solve problems, rather than holding offices. A good man who can engineer Nigeria into rebirth and restoration to offer a prosperous nation that is colorful, fluidic, vibrant and open for change.

This man will help us solve our problems instead of thinking that World Bank and IMF will. Aid agencies will discover a man who understands the convoluted nature of the new international economy and will be more effective.

Yes, a professor of immense intelligence, competence, pragmatism, and unimpeachable. A person of integrity, broad knowledge, enormous vision and solid experience; one that can stimulate more vibrancy in the private sector and move the public sector out of its stasis.

Utomi will tackle corruption and stabilize democracy. And yes, give us electoral reform to remove stagnation, circuitous legal component and time-waste to get parliament focused on their work as soon as possible after elections. This is one of Nigeria’s brightest stars, but our stars rarely light the stage.

For any praise Nigerians give Obama, Nigerians must give Utomi double.  Like Obama, he has taught. But his professorship is different, he lead Boards while teaching and has inspired many young Nigerians.  His community service is legendary. His efforts to mobilize people for social good are visible. In him Nigeria finds a future, but Nigeria is ethno poisoned to allow competence to triumph over racial lines. He is a man that one will be proud to salute as President. He has earned his respect. This man is someone that any Nigerian firm will be happy to have in its Board.

There are few like him and he wants to have an opportunity. Nigeria, make it an Utomi nation. Utomi is future and we must allow him to help us.

Our nation has enormous challenges and opportunities, from energy to education, security to transportation, health to jobs, and once in a generation, there is an answer. An answer that will prepare us for a New Nigeria through economic vibrancy; holistic, innovative and fluidic process for cooperation and conflict management; technology creation; pragmatic leadership and indeed heal us.

The answer will provide a Nigeria of openness- to goods and services, ideas and innovations, people and culture- where all tribes will share in unified dream and destiny of unlimited promise and hope. A nation where a boy not born in the Emirate or Obanate or Obinate will have equal opportunities as his peers on those feudal kingdoms is the one the answer will usher.

The answer will bring respect, clout and influence in the international scene and propels our citizens to greatness where the brightest of the land stay in Nigeria. It will be an answer that gives us joy as we experienced when in primary schools we sang the Anthem.  Honor, Dignity and Service- a treasure to our heroes’ pasts!

——–And without Utomi, we endorse Jonathan for this election——

That answer is Prof Pat Utomi. He will create a generation for regeneration of Nigeria.

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