Former vice president and Chieftain of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC), Atiku Abubakar has reiterated his believe in one Nigeria and its unity, stressing that an eye-for-an-eye will leave the country blind and weak.
Atiku, was reacting on Sunday in Abuja, on a counter quit notice issued to the unfortunate initial notices to the Igbos which he described as, “some misguided youths in July this year said:
“Again, it has sadly come to my attention that there has been a counter quit notice issued in reaction to the unfortunate initial notices issued by some misguided youths in July of this year.
“Just as I strongly condemned this act on people of the Igbo ethnic stock living in Northern Nigeria and the counter quit notices that ensued, I also vehemently condemn the retaliatory quit notice given by certain elements in other parts of Nigeria to persons of other origins be they Northern, Yoruba or any other ethnic grouping within our nation.
“It is a fallacy to believe that there are people of Northern or Southern origin. Nigeria only has people of one origin. We are all of Nigerian origin”.
The Waziri of Adamawa also said as Nigerians, we must be pragmatic enough to realize the obvious truth that an eye for an eye will leave Nigeria blind.
“Let me at this juncture remind those involved in this “quit notice”, when brothers fight to the death over a domestic dispute, it is their neighbors that eventually end up inheriting
their father’s properties.
“It is also for this reason, among others, that I emphasize on restructuring of Nigeria and state of origin to be removed from our constitution and other relevant laws and policies be replaced by state of residency.
“If we as Nigerians are tied to our residency, rather than the states where our ancestors originated from, this whole idea of quit notice would not have arisen in the first place.
“Let us remember that though we have many ethnic nationalities in Nigeria, we are all largely of one race. In the United Arab Emirates, foreigners exceed the native Emirates in number, yet the UAE is one of the most peaceful nations on earth. If people of different races can live in peace in South Africa and the United States, why can’t we do the same here in Nigeria”, he queried.
Atiku commends the National Broadcasting Commission and the National Orientation Agency for taking steps to sanction radio stations that were guilty of playing the Igbo hate song and for embarking on an anti hate speech drive saying, “Nigeria is our only country and our value as human beings is tied to the value of Nigeria. So if we must give ourselves value, we must first give Nigeria value”, he said.
Tom Okpe, Abuja