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‘We should be able to Integrate peacefully with one another in the nation’

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Emir of Zazzau, HRH Ahlaji Shehu Idris, welcoming HRH Appolus Chu to his palace in Zaria, Kaduna State.

In order to promote unity and peaceful coexistence among different ethnic groups in the country, a paramount ruler in the South South region of the country has been paying courtesy visits to traditional rulers in other parts of the country.

Ever since his ascension onto the throne, HRH (Dr) Appolus Chu, Egbere Emere Okori, of Eleme Kingdom, has not stopped at bringing succour and unity to Okori, his community in Eleme, Rivers State but has impacted uncountable lives through his Foundation which has provided scholarships, skills acquisition as well as equipped economically hundreds of people including non-indigenes in Eleme.

His recent moves to strengthen cultural ties and peaceful coexistence amongst the different regions and ethnic groups in Nigeria is commendable.

Apart from organising various events in his community to achieve this, like hosting high-class traditional rulers and other dignitaries across the country in his palace, the monarch also recently embarked on a sort of bonding visits to various palaces in Nigeria, a gesture he wants other traditional rulers to emulate.

No wonder, while on one of such visits recently to the Emir of Zazzau to facilitate with his on his 43rd year anniversary on the throne, HRH Alhaji (Dr) Shehu Idris, in Zaria, Kaduna State, the Egbere Emere Okori, of Eleme Kingdom called on traditional rulers across the nation to make out time to visit one another in order to create a strong synergy amongst themselves and their various tribes.

Appolus Chu, whose visit to the north was accorded a presidential reception with the huge crowd present to welcome him at the Emir’s palace, said the historic visit was aimed at strengthening the cordiality between the people of Northern Nigeria and the South South region and more importantly with the People of Okori, in Eleme Kingdom of Rivers State.

“It is important for traditional rulers all over Nigeria to pay regular visits to one another and to integrate with one another from different tribes in one mind and in unity despite our diversity. Also as business tycoon, I have come to realise that collaboration brings quick and timely success. That is why I have applied strategies in recent times to bring the traditional rulers from different tribes in the nation together.

“This will afford the opportunity where the Easterner, Norther, Southerner and Westerner will sit together and express themselves in a peaceful manner.

There are many advantages over this and one that I know so well is that, by the time we visit one another consistently, share our interest and challenges as well as learn from one another, there would be less strife in the nation, so that if any Eleme person finds himself/herself in trouble in any part of the country, he can easily call on the traditional ruler to address the situation.

“So this is all about us partnering and forming a strong synergy for us to be able to integrate peacefully with one another in the nation”, he noted.

Chu who further said the aim of the courtesy visit to the emir aimed to rebuild trust and national unity that will bring about peace in the nation, especially at a time like this in the history of the country, added, “When you make friends with someone, he becomes your brother and they treat you with much value and regards. He would no longer see you as a stranger and in such case everyone will relax and make progress.”

Chu who stressed that there was an urgent need to create a platform among traditional rulers in Nigeria to bring about ethnic communication, which is what the nation needs in particular at this point in time, noted that ethnic tolerance and interaction will go a long way in solving numerous problems in the nation. He, therefore, encouraged traditional rulers to make out tome to visit one another.

“Part of my crusade is to ensure that I bring traditional rulers in the country together.

The problem we have in this country is that we all often see one another as different persons and so we are suspicious of one another, which is what has brought about the retrogression in the development and unity of this country. We have found it difficult to come together in unity to sit and address issues logically.

That is why I am encouraging traditional rulers in Nigeria to try and mix up with one another.”

In his response, the Emir of Zazzau, Alhaji Shehu Idris, who recently, marked his 43rd anniversary since his ascension on the throne of the Zazzau Emirate, thanked the royal father along with his entourage for coming all the way from Rivers State to visit him, promising to reciprocate the gesture.

“Your visit to Zaria is commendable. In our meeting of the Council of Traditional Rulers, we have resolved that traditional rulers would do everything humanly possible to promote unity through visits of this kind to your fellow traditional ruler.

We, the traditional rulers will do everything humanly possible to promote peace in the nation.

The Emir decorated HRH Appolus Chu in a special robe as well as presented him a special gift while the Egbere Emere Okori, on the other hand, seized the opportunity to sign off the historic royal register.

Alhaji Idris was selected the Emir of Zazzau on February 8, 1975. Spending 43 years on the throne makes him the longest serving emir in the history of the emirate.


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