“It Is Embarrassing That War-torn Ukraine is Assisting a Peaceful Nigeria” – Peter Obi

Former governor of Anambra State and 2023 presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi, has expressed his appreciation for Ukraine’s generosity while highlighting the stark contrast it presents. He remarked, “It is embarrassing that war-torn Ukraine is assisting a peaceful Nigeria.”

Obi’s statement underscored the irony that a nation embroiled in a brutal conflict is extending a helping hand to Nigeria, a country officially at peace. The gesture shines a light on the shared humanity between nations and the importance of sound political leadership in fostering development and enhancing citizens’ standard of living.

According to Mr. Obi, the situation prompts reflection on Nigeria’s state of affairs, characterized by abundant human and natural resources but marred by years of leadership failure. Despite possessing vast arable land and natural wealth, Nigeria finds itself reliant on foreign aid for food assistance.

He also raised comparative statistics to further accentuate the disparity between the two nations. Ukraine, with a population of 43 million and a landmass of 603,728 km², outshines Northern Nigeria, covering 744,249 km² with a population exceeding 100 million. Ukraine’s GDP per capita has seen growth, surpassing $4000 despite the ongoing conflict, while Nigeria’s has regressed to $2184.

Ukraine’s agricultural prowess is evident as it cultivates over 60% of its arable land and exports agricultural products worth over $25 billion annually, a figure on par with Nigeria’s crude oil export earnings. This ability to feed itself and serve as a global food supplier highlights the potential for Nigeria to emulate and enhance its agricultural sector.

To overcome the embarrassment of relying on foreign aid for food, Nigeria must prioritize investments in productive sectors like agriculture and address insecurity to facilitate the return of farmers to their fields. Additionally, support for small businesses and the manufacturing sector is crucial for economic growth and self-sufficiency.

Mr. Obi’s remarks serve as a call to action for Nigerian leadership to urgently reassess national priorities and implement effective resource management strategies.