By Ignatius Okorocha
Prof.Pat Utomi on Monday said collpase of character in public life is a major challenge inhibiting development of the Nigerian nation.
Utomi said this at the launch of an autobiography of Sen.Enyinnaya Abaribe (PDP Abia) in Abuja on Monday.
The book titled “Made in Aba” which reviews life and time of Sen Abaribe comprised of 10 chapters and 241 pages.
According to the great Economist, there is an urgent need to pay serious attention on the character display of Nigerians in public life.
He said the crisis inhibiting the growth and development of Nigeria was that of a loss of character in public life.
“Our country is challenge in many ways, but more importantly, it is challenge of the collapse of character in public life, the crisis of our country is the crisis of lost character.”
According to him, the autobiography of Abaribe seriously speakes to the challenge of nation building on how character is formed in a person.
“I like to think of Sen.Abaribe as representing the citizen in public Life
He also decried the growing trend of tribalists in the nation state, noting that it was a bane to development.
“It seems some how in Nigeria that we are lost in the world of tribes in Nigeria.
“But we can ascend from tribes men to the next level of becoming the citizen,who,looks at our common humanity, we looks at our common good, who is focused on how to advance the common good of all.
“And to me Sen. Enyinnaya Abaribe is one of the few politicians from the South-East who is truly a citizen in public Life.”
Utomi also noted the need for the citizens to always engage office holders on their activities for the good of all.
“Citizens are supposed to engage the state public officials, because we have not built up citizens, there is a gap between those who are in public life and the Nigerian people .
“And it has not helped us to develop because people in public life separates themselves from the people.
“But, Enyinnaya Abaribe continually returns to the people and speaks for the people and I think that this makes him a unique citizen in public life.
Mr Peter Obi, former Governor of Anambra a State in his remark said Abaribe was reputed for speaking truth to power.
He said the author represents what a lawmaker should be globally given his courage to speak against injustice always.
High point of the book launch was the unveling of the book cutting of the 66 birthday cake of the author.