President Goodluck Jonathan on Thursday evening called for the unity of African countries against some imbalances in the prevailing global order.
He said black people, with a common ancestry, must unite to fight social ills such as terrorism, poverty, diseases and illiteracy, among others.
Jonathan made the call in an address delivered at a joint meeting of Jamaica’s Houses of Parliament in commemoration of the country’s 50th independence anniversary in Kingston, Jamaica.
He said although Africa was now free of colonialism, the continent was still greatly dependent on others for economic survival.
He asked Africans to be committed to liberating themselves from economic woes by working with other developing nations of the world to achieve economically what they had achieved politically.
He said, “In a highly globalised and competitive world, states are forming strong regional economic blocs. To promote trade and investments, boundaries are getting narrower every day.
“It is for the same reason that we must support one another in tackling the scourge of imbalances in the prevailing global order. As black people, with a common ancestry, we must unite to fight poverty, hunger, diseases, illiteracy, bad governance and electoral malpractices.
“We must unite to fight ethnic conflicts, dictatorial regimes in Africa and terrorism. We must unite to secure a place of pride for the Black man in a modern and technology-driven world.”
Jonathan said a determined people would prevail and overcome any challenge that may be thrown at them irrespective of time and space.
He said the fact is that the black man is alive; resilient, proud and moving on despite huge challenges. Jonathan said there was much that Jamaica and Nigeria could do together to promote and sustain the democratic ethos and culture, beyond each respective countries.
He said the two countries must work together to secure and guarantee human, civil and other basic rights that support nation building.
He expressed joy that most black people of the world live in countries where democratic governments were in control, saying the destiny of the Black person was now in their own hands.
Despite this, however, the President regretted that the Black race had not conquered poverty, diseases, ethnic conflicts and under development. This, he said, must be addressed.
“There is the need for Nigeria and Jamaica, and indeed the rest of the world, to work together to reduce the level of those artificial forces that have kept the majority of our people from making progress,” he said.
Jonathan said he believed that democracy, good governance and the rule of law will be the tonic that will revolutionise black nations’ economies and technological development.
The President said leaders, including him, could not afford to disappoint their people and future generations.
“We are working very hard. But we have a duty and a responsibility to create, nurture and sustain an environment under which future generations have no other option but to prosper and excel.
“We can only do this through the consolidation of democracy and good governance,” he added