Former President Olusegun Obasanjo says it is important for a leader to have a close relationship with God, declaring that any leader who does not have the fear of God is dangerous.
Obasanjo, who spoke in Abuja on Thursday, also urged Nigerian youths to believe in Nigeria and develop love for the country, saying there was no alternative to their country.
The ex-President participated in The Bridge Foundation’s Emerging Political Leaders Fellowship programme on Thursday.
While advising Nigerian youths on leadership qualities, Obasanjo said, “Knowledge is very important, accurate knowledge. You also need the fear of God and proximity to God. When you are a leader and you do not fear God, then you are a dangerous leader.
“Wherever you may choose, leadership is very important and the principles are basically the same. A good leader must have certain characteristics, knowledge is good, but not enough. How diligent are you? What is your level of integrity? What are the values that you cherish?”
The former President said the way forward for Nigeria was for the nation not to lose.
“Let us get it right and in two years we will forget everything. You have to get involved in everything.
“You are the leaders of today, if you don’t take it now, you will never get it. You have to be positively disruptive, don’t accept things the way they are. You need to make those who need to be made uncomfortable, uncomfortable.”
Obasanjo also called for a national discourse on Nigeria’s democracy, saying: “What is Nigeria’s history in democracy? What is Nigeria’s value? What is our culture in democracy? Let us rethink the context and the content of our democracy. Let’s interrogate, let’s ask questions. If you don’t do it, who else will do it?”
He added: “Many people don’t believe in Nigeria. Don’t let us deceive ourselves. If you don’t believe in Nigeria, what do you want to talk about? You need to believe in Nigeria. Every country has a history of how they came about. We have to accept that Nigeria is ours; we love it, and we cherish it. We have no alternative.”