President Goodluck Ebele today asked Nigerians toÂ always put the interest of the nation first in all of their activities. The President was speaking while receiving former Minister of Information Chief Edwin Kiagbodo Clark, who visited him in company of some of his associates today at State House, Abuja.
President Jonathan used the occasion to extol the values of nationalism and cohesion that Chief E. K. Clark stood for over the years. He described him as detribalized, and one who has friends and contacts in all parts of the country irrespective of tribe or association.
Alhaji M.D. Yusuf, former Inspector General of Police and former Presidential candidate, thanked the President for the evening, noting that while Clark’s comments could sometimes be hard pills to swallow, they do not detract from his sense of devotion to national integration.
Also speaking, former PDP chairman and elder statesman, Chief Solomon Lar, described Clark as a bridge-builder who believes in one indivisible Nigeria and puts the nation first in all he does. He called on all citizens to consider the interest of the nation first, notwithstanding its multi-ethnicity. He commended President Jonathan for his tradition of hosting elder-statesmen who have contributed to nation-building, saying the gesture should be emulated by future leaders.
Former PDP BoT chair, Chief Tony Anenih, also extolled the virtues of Clark whom he described as a man of his words. He also called on Nigerians to always speak against oppression and stand for the truth at all times, as Chief Clark has always done.
In her own contribution, former Minister of Finance, Mrs Nenadi Usman, described Clark as one of the fathers of the nation, who abhors injustice and who always speaks up no matter whose ox is gored. She also seized the occasion to thank the President for receiving the group while praying God to guide him as he leads the nation on.
In his remarks, Clark thanked President Jonathan for receiving him and his associates in spite of his tight schedule, noting that President Jonathanâ€™s assumption of office is the handiwork of God and the Nigerian people. He therefore prayed the Almighty to give the President the courage and wisdom to lead the nation aright.
He enjoined all Nigerians to continue to sustain the unity of the country at all times, and do away with sectional interests pointing out that â€œwe are one Nigeriaâ€.
Dignitaries present included Vice President Mohammed Namadi Sambo, Delta Governor, Emmanuel Uduaghan, Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Elder Godsday Orubebe former Chief of General Staff, Air Admiral Mike Akhigbe (rtd), former Deputy Speaker, House of Reps, Prince Chibudom Nwuche, Alhaji M.D. Yusuf, Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife, Chief Frederick Faseun, Dr. Doyin Okupe.
Others include former Bayelsa State governor, Chief DSP Alamieyeseigha, Mr. Ledum Mitee, Mr. John Fashanu, among other distinguished Nigerians.