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Akpabio: Reintroduced National Anthem Could Have Prevented Banditry

Senate President Godswill Akpabio believes that reinstating Nigeria’s old national anthem, “Nigeria, We Hail Thee,” could have mitigated banditry and insecurity if it had been retained.

 

Recently, the Senate and House of Representatives passed the National Anthem Bill 2024, reverting to the original anthem abolished in 1978. The National Assembly swiftly approved the bill, replacing “Arise, O Compatriots” with “Nigeria, We Hail Thee.” President Bola Tinubu signed the bill into law, making it the country’s new anthem.

 

During a visit to the Nigeria Institute of Legislative and Democratic Studies in Abuja, Akpabio emphasized that the reintroduced anthem would promote unity, patriotism, and love among Nigerians. He dismissed criticisms labeling the anthem as colonial, highlighting the historical context of its creation by a Nigerian panel in 1959.

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“A lot of people are not aware that there was a panel set up and made up of Nigerians to receive input from all over the world in 1959,” Akpabio stated. “When people say we’re bringing in a colonial anthem, they need to look into the history of ‘Nigeria, We Hail Thee.’ If we had kept that anthem, we probably would not have banditry today because if you take your neighbor as your brother, you will not want to kill him.”

 

Akpabio also announced a significant milestone for Nigerian students, revealing that over 30,000 students have been selected to benefit from the newly implemented student loan scheme. He praised the Student Loan Bill, which aims to provide higher education opportunities for children of the poor and underprivileged without financial strain.

 

“One of the most important bills for the tenth Assembly was the bill sent to us by President Bola Tinubu. The Student Loan Bill enables vulnerable Nigerian students, the less privileged, to obtain higher education. As I speak to you now, over 30,000 Nigerian students have already been selected to benefit from that scheme. This is one of the bills I find most appealing,” Akpabio noted.

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