Nigerian government determined to sustain peace

Timothy Choji, Abuja

Nigeria’s Acting President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo government will do everything to stop any move that will jeopardize the peace and security of the nation.

He made the remark while addressing the leaders of thought of the South –East geopolitical zone of the country at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The meeting, which came on the heels of a similar one held on Tuesday with leaders of thought from Northern Nigeria, forms part of steps taken by the Nigerian government to nip in the bud, recent remarks that have the tendency to fuel crisis.

According to Professor Osinbajo, government must check the proliferation of hate speech, in order to uphold the peace and progress of the nation.

“There have been agitations by young people in the South-East calling for secession from Nigeria and then there was the recent ultimatum issued by a group of young people from the North, asking all people of South-east origin residing in the North to leave by October 1st this year. Both of these expressions and agitations have been accompanied by some very hateful language and we ought to address these proclamations decisively and urgently and it’s in our bid as government to deal with these grievances that we have convened this series of consultations with various groups,” Professor Osinbajo said.

Strict Warning

The Acting President said wars were not ignited by the bullet only but words. Thus, Nigeria could not afford bloodshed, having just come out the boko haram menace; therefore, anyone found fermenting trouble in any part of the country would be decisively dealt with.

“Any hate or divisive speech and actions will be met with the full wrath of the law. Let there be no doubt whatsoever of the resolve of government to ensure that no one would be allowed to get away with little speeches that can cause division, it will not be tolerated,” the Acting President warned.

He emphasized that government was resolute in protecting every citizen and residents of the country, adding that loyalty to the nation must override personal or sectional loyalty.

The consultative meeting was attended by the President of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara; Governors of Abia, Anambra, Ebonyi, Enugu and Imo states that make up the South-East as well as other distinguished sons and daughters of the zone.