Tinubu Signs Bill Returning Old National Anthem Into Law

President Bola Tinubu has made a significant decision by assenting to the National Anthem Bill 2024, reverting Nigeria back to its old national anthem, “Nigeria, we hail thee.”

The bill, which has now become law, was confirmed by Senate President Godswill Akpabio during a joint session of the National Assembly, marking the Silver Jubilee of Nigeria’s 4th Republic. President Tinubu, who later joined the session, emphasized that “Nigeria, we hail thee” would now be the “latest national anthem.”

Akpabio explained that the primary purpose of the joint session was to launch the new national anthem. Following Tinubu’s signing of the bill, the joint sitting decided to adopt the former national anthem, “Nigeria, we hail thee,” which was in use before 1978, replacing “Arise, O Compatriots.”

The old anthem, composed in 1960 by Lillian Jean Williams and Frances Berda, played a crucial role in shaping Nigeria’s national identity and unity during its early years of independence.

Here are the lyrics to “Nigeria, We Hail Thee”:

Nigeria, we hail thee, Our own dear native land, Though tribe and tongue may differ, In brotherhood, we stand, Nigerians all, and proud to serve Our sovereign Motherland.

Our flag shall be a symbol That truth and justice reign, In peace or battle honour’d, And this we count as gain, To hand on to our children A banner without stain.

O God of all creation, Grant this our one request, Help us to build a nation Where no man is oppressed, And so with peace and plenty Nigeria may be blessed.

The decision to revert to the old anthem has sparked mixed reactions among Nigerians, with some welcoming it while others question its relevance amidst economic challenges and insecurity. However, it remains a symbolic move that reflects the nation’s rich heritage and aspirations for unity and progress.

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