…LET'S REVIEW OUR UNITY -OPC LEADER
As the menace of the Boko-Haram sect continues to spread across the northern part of the country and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) with its attendant loss of lives and property, the National Coordinator of Oodua People's Congress (OPC), Otunba Gani Adams, has raised fears over Nigeria's unity and existence as a corporate entity.
The OPC leader stressed the need to take a cursory look at the viability of living together as one entity and called for an immediate convocation of Sovereign National Conference (SNC) where all the ethnic nationalities in the country would converge and ventilate their opinions and grievances.
He also warned members of the dreaded Boko Haram sect to steer clear of the South-west as any attempt to extend their activities to the zone would be resisted by the OPC, the socio-cultural group of the Yoruba nation.
The National Coordinator said it was time the various tribes in Nigeria came together to review the unity of the country to decide whether to continue living as one strong nation or otherwise.
The leader of the socio-cultural organization, though once a militant group, opined that the tension in the land would be doused and a lasting solution proffered to the plethora of problems confronting the country through such sovereign conference.
He traced the crisis bedeviling the country to what he called the forced amalgamation of the Northern and Southern protectorates of Nigeria in 1914 by the British colonialists.
'The amalgamation of this country in 1914, we have to re-examine it. Most of our leaders did not agree that they wanted to form a nation; the British colonial masters just forced us together because of their own interests', he noted.
He however, faulted the mode of operation of the Boko Haram sect, especially for killing innocent and law-abiding people in the cause of its agitation warning that they should be mindful enough to restrict their activities to the North.
' Coming to South-West would be the greatest mistake they will make. If they do that, it would turn to serious uprising because we will not fold our hands and allow some people to continue to take the lives of our people', he warned.
He said the demand for Sharia in 12 states in the North is not enough reason to start killing fellow Nigerians there just as he argued that the agitation was not only religious but also has political undertone because the northern states have always operated Sharia even though not fully.
' Every state in the core North has Sharia court. But it is not only in the North we have Muslims. There are Muslims also in the South. So, why are they insisting on the imposition of Sharia in 12 states unless they want to create Arewa Republic ' he queried, submitting that their activities are not only religious but equally has political undertone.
He lamented that in other countries where they experience secularity more than that of Nigeria, they are still enjoying relative peace and equally advancing in all aspects of human endeavours.
He criticised any planned amnesty for the sect saying it would encourage mushroom groups to come and start another level of agitation.
Adams warned the country's leaders to take a cue from what is happening in the Arab world by giving the masses good governance to avoid a re-enactment of the protests in that part of the world in Nigeria.
'See what is happening in the Arab nations-Yemen, Libya, Egypt and other Arab countries, people are protesting because their governments are not doing what they expected of them'.
On the planned one single tenure proposed by President Goodluck Jonathan, Adams said it was a good step in the right direction because it would not only ginger political leaders to want to write their names in gold, it would curb corruption.