PIC: Prime Minister, Rt. Hon. Raila Amolo Odinga (left) and the Publisher of The Guardian, Dr. Alex Ibru, during Odinga's arrival at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, Nigeria
Prime Minister Raila Odinga and legendary Nigerian author Professor Chinua Achebe are today scheduled deliver lectures to commemorate the 25th anniversary of Nigeria's Guardian Newspaper Limited, publishers of the leading Guardian titles.
In the front page report on the lectures, the Guardian paper ran lengthy biographies on panafricanist, democrat and freedom fighter Odinga and, teacher, critic, poet and essayist Achebe, describing them as 'Africa's illustrious sons'.
The lectures will be held at the think-tank Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA) in the economic capital city of Lagos. Raila Odinga is to deliver a lecture entitled "Democracy and the challenge of good government in Africa".
Speaking to a battery of journalists who thronged the presidential wing of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos on Wednesday shortly after his arrival from representing Kenya at the 1st World Policy Congress in Evian – France, Raila said; "I want to basically thank my host for inviting me to Nigeria. I am very happy to be in Nigeria today. I have come with a team of fellow Kenyans. I like the spirit of Nigerians. You asked me about the electoral fraud. Electoral fraud can only be dealt with by reforms, through instituting total reforms of having independent electoral body to preside over elections. We have leaders of yesterday who are resisting change. They do not want to accept the will of the people through democratic process and those new ones who are coming in and are basically democrats like to play by the rule. This is a transition period from the time multi-partism came into Africa that is from the early 1990s up till now. ”
According to a press statement issued by Guardian Newspapers, Professor Chinua Achebe, best known for his evergreen classic, Things Fall Apart, will deliver a keynote speech at the event. Nigeria’s President Umaru Yar’adua will be the Special Guest of Honour while Nigeria’s former military head of state, Yakubu Gowon would serve as the Chairman of the Ceremony.
This blogger will monitor events in Lagos and update the post at an opportune time.