The Founder, Silverbird Group, Ben Murray Bruce has made comments about defeat and victory after elections, while making his speech during the Silverbird Man of The Year Awards which was held Friday, March 3, at the Eko Hotel and Suites Victoria Island, Lagos.
The event which attracted dignitaries from different sectors and industry of Nigeria, was organised by the Silverbird Group to honour some persons for their achievements, impact to society and humanity.
Apart from the Founder of Silverbird Group, other dignitaries like the President, Silverbird Group, Guy Murray-Bruce, the Chief Operating Officer, Silverbird Group, Shiyanbola Salako, the Gubernatorial candidate of Labour Party for Lagos State, Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour, veteran Nigerian broadcaster, Bisi Olatilo, Nigerian American actress, Osas Ighodaro, Nigerian actor, Deyemi Okanlawon and others were also present at the event.
Below is the full speech of Ben Murray-Bruce to Nigerians.
We’ve been through a very difficult time with the elections we’ve had and the mood of the nation is not as great as I thought it will be. Some people are sad, some are happy, some are exited and I’m a lost for the way Nigeria feels right now.
So, I would just imagine a class, high school, university. The kid next to you got an A Plus, distinction. And you flopped. The kid in front of you celebrating, happy, exited. They made it. But you are sad because you didn’t get the grades. Both of you are friends: one made it, one didn’t. What do you do?
Let’s go back in time. The civilian era before the military era, politicians who lost election wait for the military to overthrow the government. It was the only way they could get revenge for losing an election. That was not right, but they did it. I
I remember in 83, I was at punch Newspapers head office and I was talking to the owner of Punch and he was dying of cancer. That weekend, December 31st, he wrote an editorial: front page, back page, inside front page and he asked for the overthrow of the Shagari administration.
The very next day, the military struck, Shagari went to prison and the military took over Nigeria. We cannot afford to be so angry that we ask the military to come back and rule us again. We must be careful; we can win and we can lose. This is the way I see defeat.
Defeat means you have a chance to find out what went wrong, fix the problem so that you can become a better competitor in another date. Defeat doesn’t mean you destroy Nigeria or you destroy the system. It is counterproductive. Defeat can never help you.
If you destroy Nigeria, you have no jobs, kids cannot go to school, you cannot have resources, we will all be in trouble. Defeat does not give you the right to destroy what keeps us alive.
Defeat gives you the opportunity to roll it over, start up all over again and become a better person and successful one more time.
I urge all those who lost to think about what I have just said. And if you have won, please, when you win an election, do not gloat, do not tell the world how great you are, have some compassion for those who lost. Afterall, when you win, you will lead those who lost, and you will have to accommodate them in your government or if you want or deal with them as your subjects. If you run a truck over them, make them feel they are nothing, they will revolt and rebel. If they revolt and rebel, you cannot lead, you cannot rule, you will get yourself in trouble.
We are at the crossroads of life. Some have lost some have won. But, in the end, we are all Nigerians. We must find a way to co-exist peacefully so we all become as successful as nature.
On that note ladies and gentlemen, thank you all for being here. The Man of The Year is an award chosen by the people of Nigeria not Ben Bruce, not editorial board.
Thank you all and God bless you.
There were other attractions during the event like, arrival of guests on red carpet, beautiful music, raffle draw in which 10 people won one million naira each, courtesy Premier Lotto Limited and an interesting speech by the Labour Party Gubernatorial candidate for Lagos, Gbadebo Rhodes.