- Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has urged Nigerians to shun hate speeches and violence
- Tinubu said that those calling for violence was been handled appropriately
- The elder statesmen urged Nigerians to seek peace and progress
National Leader of the All Progressives Congress chieftain, (APC) Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has said that the those who are calling for secession and break-up do not mean well.
The former governor of Lagos said: “Voices calling for violence must be roundly condemned for it is wrong to incite brother to go against brother and neighbour to combat neighbour.”
Tinubu said in his Eid-el-Fitri message to Nigerians at the weekend that the only path to toe in achieving the best for all Nigerians is dialogue, Vanguard reports.
The ex-lawmaker's opinion was aired in a statement issued and signed by his media adviser, Tunde Rahman, on Saturday, June 25.
The statement entitled “Eid-el-Fitri Message: The Spirit, Strength of Our Diversity”, Tinubu said the spirit of sacrifice, self discipline, goodwill, justice, tolerance, mercy, forgiveness and compassion inherent in the Ramadan Fast should remain with Muslim faithfuls to guide their day-to-day interactions and relationships with one another.
Asiwaju Tinubu said: “Voices calling for violence must be roundly condemned for it is wrong to incite brother to go against brother and neighbour to combat neighbour.
Voices calling for secession and break-up are wrong and should not be followed.
“However, in the spirit of understanding, we must listen to the genuine concerns of our fellow Nigerians so that we may make of ourselves a stronger, more unified and prosperous nation built on a foundation of dialogue and collective purpose.
“We must join hands in order to bring progress. We must decide whether our diversity shall be our strength or our weakness. It is for us and no one else to determine. The lessons of the holy month of Ramadan point to the success of unity not the failure of division.
“Let us move in this way that we may make of ourselves a better people and nation in which all people, Muslim and non-Muslim, may live in trust, peace and justice as Allah would have it be”.
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In a similar vein, the Igbo apex socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, yesterday branded as treason, the recent quit notice issued to the Igbo resident in the north by a coalition of Arewa youths.
More worrisome to Ohanaeze is “the clear incapacitation of the police and unwillingness to arrest them, their renewed aggression following the issuance of another statement involving an association of wider youth organisations in the north and the support offered to them by splinter elements of the Northern Elders Forum.”
The President General of the group, Chief John Nnia Nwodo, likened the Arewa youths, utterances to the events preceding the mayhem against the Igbo in 1966.
“Are the rhetoric of today not similar to the rhetoric before the 1966 pogrom? If there should be a repeat performance what explanation can we make to our people?”
Nwodo said at the inauguration of a 100 member National Executive Committee to formulate economic and political policies for Ohanaeze.
He said: “Quite recently, we have witnessed very provoking and unpatriotic remarks from Arewa youths. Their remarks have grown from whispers to a national quit notice to the Igbo to leave Northern Nigeria.
“Whilst we applaud the immediate and unequivocal condemnation of their utterances by the Governor of Kaduna state, the Northern Governors Forum, the Middle Belt Forum and the rather mild and equivocal condemnation from the Arewa Consultative Forum, the defiance of the Arewa youths by threatening and daring the police to arrest them, the clear incapacitation of the police and unwillingness to arrest them, their renewed aggression following the issuance of another statement involving an association of wider youth organisations in the North and the support offered to them by splinter elements of the Northern Elders Forum point to a swell of reasonable support from a section of Northern Nigeria.
“What remains worrisome is the incapacity of the police to make needful arrests in this situation pointing to double standards from our security forces. A desire and public proclamation for the State of Biafra cannot be too different from a quit notice which amounts to a declaration for a new state of Nigeria without the Igbo.
“In the latter case, an obvious violation of our constitution points to treason, a declaration to take inventory and acquire property not belonging to one amounts to conversion and a declaration to commence ‘mop up’ action if the quit notice is not complied with at a certain date is a declaration of war.
“If our security forces, firmly in command and control by mainly officers of Northern Nigeria, fail to carry out lawful and needful arrests of criminals amongst Arewa youths, or coup plotters in the army and their civilian collaborators, how can we expect them to heed to the orders of the Acting President to protect our people in the North? What should we advise our people in the North to do in the circumstance?
“Against this background our young men and women are spiralling out of control. The jury is still out in Igbo land regarding the choice between self-determination and restructuring as a solution to our current impasse.
“Whereas a lot of the elderly, the business class and the professionals want to preserve our continued existence as one indivisible, united and restructured Nigeria, a number of the young ones are resolute about self-determination.
“How do we resolve this duplicity that gives the impression that we all are on one of the sides depending on who is making the assessment?
“We have, as Ohanaeze, maintained absolute restraint in our public utterances. The Acting President by his interactions with all concerned groups shows that he is prepared to engage everyone in order to ensure that justice is done.
“His proclamation that government will guarantee the security of life of all Nigerians and their properties wherever they live is reassuring.
“What worries us, however, is whether the Arewa youths are acting out a plan that may spiral out of control. Why have disclosures that some soldiers are talking with politicians not led to any arrest?
“Why has none of the Arewa youths been arrested in spite of the orders of the Inspector General of Police and the Chief Security Officer of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai?”
Below is a NAIJ.com video in which Nnamdi Kanu addressed his followers in Isiama Afara, Abia state.