Activist lawyer, Mr Femi Falana (SAN), on Monday advised Nigerian presidential candidates seeking office in 2019 to listen to the late legendary musician, Fela Anikulapo-Kuti’s music, to get solutions proffered to the nation’s problems.
Falana gave the advice during the 2018 Felabration tagged Fela @ 80: Overtaking Overtake, at the Fela debates titled: “African Leadership in the Millennium” in Lagos.
He said that the late Fela had seen Nigeria’s problems, as he gave warning and proffered solutions to such problems in his music before his death.
Fela, who was born on Oct. 15, 1938 and died on Aug. 2, 1997, was the pioneer of the Afrobeat music genre and a human rights activist.
He composed many songs on societal ills in Nigeria and the African continent, and had many brushes with several Nigerian governments which he often criticised in his songs.
Some of such popular songs include ‘Suffering and Smiling’, ‘Authority Stealing’, ‘Zombie’, ‘Water No Get Enemy’ and ‘Lady’.
Falana said: ” I want most of these presidential aspirants to listen to Fela’s music very well where they can find solutions to most of our problems.
” Our country is rich as Fela sang in his music, but our people are still hungry and poor; you must understand our society before you can lead us.”
Falana urged young Nigerians to get organised so that the sky would be their starting point.
He said that if Nigeria could get it right, the black man all over Africa would be happy.
Presidential candidate of the African Action Congress, Mr Omoyele Sowore, who also spoke at the event, advised Nigerians to take charge of their destinies by voting rightly, come 2019.
Sowore said that History was important for the school curriculum, as the negative influences of the nation’s bad past leaders should be known to the younger generation.
He urged Nigerian youths who feel capable of occupying public office to indicate interest and ensure novices are not given the opportunity to rule.
Politician and legal practitioner, Eunice Atu-Ejide, who also spoke at the event, urged Nigerians to look out for virtues such as sincerity, honesty, positive character and integrity, rather than age, in choosing leaders.
“We must stop inciting violence and hatred, but focus on choosing rightly.
” Age is not a determinant if a presidential candidate will do well in the office, but the character and integrity should be considered,” she said.
The 2018 Felabration, which commenced on Monday, will run through the week with performances by artists from Togo, France and Nigeria, dance competitions, among others.
Felabration is an annual festival of music and arts commemorating the life and times of Nigeria’s foremost musical icon, the late Fela Anikulakpo Kuti.
The idea and concept of Felabration as an annual celebration of Fela’s music, life and times, originated from his eldest child Yeni who conceived it in 1998.
Currently, Felabration organised by the Felabration Organising Committee has grown into a mega week-long musical event in Nigeria, attracting thousands of visitors annually to the New Africa Shrine from all over the world.