The Minister of Works, Babatunde Raji Fashola, has said that it is the negative mindset of citizens about Nigeria that is retarding the country’s progress and not colonialism.
Fashola, who said this while delivering a lecture titled: “Mind, Mindset and State of Mind”, at the 11th convocation ceremony of Veritas University, Abuja, challenged youths to develop a positive mindset about Nigeria and be ready to contribute to its progress. He said, “Please tell the apologists of colonial heritage that the USA, UAE and China were once colonies that have become either better than or as competitive as those who colonised them.
“It is a positive mindset that enables you to understand that those who colonised you are approaching the peak of their development while ours is still fledging.
“We have much more scope for development, the opportunity to leapfrog and the limitless capacity to be better. The future should not, therefore, be defined or held back by the past.
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“Our minds, your minds, our mindset, your mindset and our state of mind and your state of mind are the unshakeable pillars upon which that future will be built.
“Think of it this way; the world listens to our music, watches our movies, uses our sportsmen and women, recruits our personnel across many fields of human endeavour and eats our food.
“Clearly my mind tells me that there is inherent value and goodness in all of these contrary to the view that our continent is the Dark Continent.”
The former Lagos State governor said it was wrong to blame Nigeria’s woes on the amalgamation of Nigeria by Lord Lugard.
He said, “Please quote me that I said that it is not the fact of colonialism that has held us back; rather it is our mindset.”