I welcome you all to this important occasion of the launching of the
National Re-orientation Campaign, called ‘Change Begins With Me’.
Nigeria today is passing through a challenging moment where hardly
anything works in a normal manner. Many have attributed this
phenomenon to the total breakdown of our core values over the years.
2. It is safe to say today that honesty, hard work, Godliness have
given way to all kinds of manifestations of lawlessness and
degeneration in our national life. This is why we have among our
cardinal objectives ‘change’, which implies the need for a change of
attitude and mindset in our everyday life.
3 I need not mention the serious effort we have engaged in since
the inception of this administration on the fight against corruption
in our public life. With the progress we have so far made in that
regard, we feel the need to ensure that we put in place the
necessary sustainable framework for action and measures that will help
to entrench and consolidate the progress achieved so far.
4. This we believe can best be maintained through attitudinal
change, and the change of our mindset in private and public life.
The campaign we are about to launch today is all about the need for us
to see change not merely in terms of our economic, social progress but
in terms of our personal behaviour on how we conduct ourselves, engage
our neigbhours, friends and generally how we relate with the larger
society in a positive and definitive way and manner that promotes our
common good and common destiny, change at home, change in the work
place, change at traffic junction, change at traffic lights etc.
5. This campaign is part of the determination of our party to seek
to carry all Nigerians along on the journey to a better and greater
society that we all can be proud of.
6. There is no doubt that our value system has been badly eroded
over the years. The long-cherished and time honoured, time-tested
virtues of honesty, integrity, hard work, punctuality, good
neighbourliness, abhorrence of corruption and patriotism, have given
way in the main to dishonesty, indolence, unbridled corruption and
7. The resultant effect of this derailment in our value system is
being felt in the social, political and economic sphere. It is the
reason that some youths will take to cultism and brigandage instead of
studying hard or engaging in decent living; it is the reason that some
elements will break pipelines and other oil facilities, thus robbing
the nation of much-needed resources; it is the reason that money
belonging to our commonwealth will be brazenly stolen by the same
public officials to whom they were entrusted; it is the reason why
motorist drive through red traffic lights, it is the reason that many
will engage in thuggery and vote-stealing during elections; it is
part of what has driven our economy into deep problem out of which we
are now working hard to extricate ourselves. Every one of us must have
a change from our old ways of doing things, we cannot fold our arms
and allow things to continue the old way.
8. We must resist the temptation to fall back on the same
partisanship, pettiness and immaturity that have poisoned our country
for so long. Let us summon a new spirit of responsibility, spirit of
service, of patriotism and sacrifice, Let us all resolve to pitch in
and work hard and look after, not only ourselves but one another, What
the current problem has taught us is that we cannot have a thriving
army of rent seekers and vested interests, while the majority suffers.
9. Rather than sit back and complain endlessly, we have decided to
act pragmatically, with the launch of this National Re-orientation
Campaign. The campaign will not be a sprint but a marathon that will
run the course of our tenure. We are under no illusion that the
changes we seek will happen overnight, but we have no doubt that the
campaign will help restore our value system and rekindle our
10. I am therefore appealing to all Nigerians to be part of this
campaign. Our citizens must realize that the change they want to see
begins with them, and that personal and social reforms are not
theoretic exercise. If you have not seen the change in you, you cannot
see it in others or even the larger society. In other words, before
you ask ‘where is the change they promised us’, you must first ask how
far have I changed my ways ‘what have I done to be part of the change
for the greater good of society’.
11. While the government will drive the Change Begins With Me’
campaign, it must be strongly supported by all concerned individually.
In this regard the private sector is a major stakeholder. Indeed when
the campaign succeeds, it will impact heavily on the private sector. A
punctual, diligent and hardworking staff can only be of benefit of not
just himself or herself or the organization they work for but to
various governments whether at local, state or Federal level.
12. While congratulating the stakeholders, especially Ministry of
Information and Culture and the National Orientation Agency for
conceiving this campaign, I charge all to pursue the campaign with
vigour and ensure its sustenance by taking it to all the nook and
crannies of this country, with the aim of getting the buy in of the
old, the young, the rich, the poor irrespective of gender or other
13. Your Excellencies, Honourable Ministers, Members of the National
Assembly, Ladies and Gentlemen, it is now my pleasure to formally
launch and handover the instrument of the Change Campaign tagged
Change Begins With Me to the Honourable Minister for Information and
Culture, for transmission to all Nigerians and friends of Nigeria.
Indeed I say to the glory of Mighty Allah, “Change Begins With Me”
14. Thank you all for your kind attention