The need for a united Nigeria at 56 and beyond
Sir: From a Neolithic and Iron Age Civilisation by the Nok in the Present Day Jos in Plateau State as far back as 800 BC, to the 11th Century formation of the Hausa Kingdoms and Borno Dynasty in the North, Oyo and Benin Kingdoms in the South, to the founding of the Sokoto Caliphate in 1809, to the 1850s establishment of British presence around Lagos, to the 1914 Nigerian Protectorate, to our Independence from British rule in 1960, then the dark 30 months of the brutal Civil War which began in 1967, to Military Rule, then Democracy, to the Present Day, we have managed to present a ‘common front’ as a people.
Recently, there have been strident calls from some quarters for a break-up of Nigeria as we know it, based on perceived injustices to some sections of our dear country. But, is Nigeria’s disintegration the solution to our problems?
I say NO. This is because any country which desires to be taken seriously in the comity of developed nations, derives its strength from its human and material resources, size and population. We will not stand a chance if we are divided. Remember, united we stand, divided we fall.
Government, therefore, needs to move decisively to check the current trend of general insecurity, violence, repression, imbalance and yes, injustice – perceived or real.
It is important on this 56th Anniversary of our Independence to remember that most Nigerians are still thriving in peaceful co-existence with their neighbours, regardless of what part of Nigeria they come from or how they worship God.
For our sake, therefore, our common Nigerian identity cannot be compromised.
Dauda Lawal can be reached at @DaudaLawalPhD
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