- Acting President Osinbajo has told citizens of the country that a new Nigeria is possible
- He said Nigerians can build a new country with love and understanding
- He however accused the elites of fueling division withing the country
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has urged the current generation of Nigerians to build a new nation out of the rubble of “cynicism, division and suspicions”.
The acting president said this while speaking as a Special Guest of Honour at the graduation of the 2017 class of Senior Course 39 of the Armed Forces Command & Staff College, Jaji, Kaduna state on Friday, June 23, Premium Times reports.
“We can build a new nation; a new nation built on trust, consensus and love for one another and love for our country is possible. A nation where the rulers do not steal the commonwealth, where every Nigerian is safe to live and work, where the State takes responsibility for the security of each and every Nigerian, where the State knows every Nigerian by name and can find and locate each one of us,” he said.
“A Nigeria where the Ibo or Ijaw man can live peacefully in Sokoto, and the Fulani man can live peacefully in the Niger Delta.”
He however stated that the division in the country is fueled by the elites: “I would like to emphasize the fact that this was essentially an elite phenomenon, unity and disunity are promoted by the elite which the vast majority of the Nigerian people are only later conscripted.”
Going further , the acting president cautioned Nigerians against misuse of of freedom of speech: “While we must remain irrevocably committed to freedom of expression and the tenets of a free press, we must draw the line between freedom that conduces to healthy democracy and that which threatens and endangers the entire democratic enterprise . It is an important balance, that we must strike. Failure in any way will be tragic.”
“Today a great deal of the threats facing Nigeria are being nurtured and cultivated in the vast spaces of the Internet. The rumblings of secession, the dangerous quit ultimatums to ethnic groups, the radio stations and blogs that spew divisive speech and exploit our fault lines; all of these are now to be found online.”
The acting president however expressed optimism about the country stating that “the truth is that our nation and national unity is worth preserving and protecting. We are the preeminent power in Africa today in terms of population, size of our markets , natural resources and economy. We are a factor in the geopolitics of the world, no one can ignore a nation state that is home to one in every four black persons. Smaller is weaker not stronger today.”
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Urging the country to rise above ethnicity, he said: “We must develop the emotional intelligence required to cope and adapt in a swiftly and constantly changing world. We must adopt a global mindset, that seeks to learn from the experiences of other countries, far and near, so that we do not waste valuable time repeating mistakes that we should have learned from and learned to avoid."
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com reported that acting President Yemi Osinbajo met with some governors to discuss how to battle hate speech and the agitation for secession by a section of the country.
After the meeting which was held at Presidential Villa, Abuja, the governors while addressing the press said they have resolved to battle hate speech emanating from their states and to ensure that Nigeria stays as a nation.
NAIJ.com learnt that the governors agreed that agitation will only increase poverty, hunger and unemployment in the land and that everyone will lose if Nigeria should break up.
Watch Acting President Yemi Osinbajo deliver a speech on the Biafra war: