- Ambassador Yerima Abdullahi says it is better to allow Igbos to have their own country instead of the demand should cause violence
- The former envoy to Malaysia and elder statesman said Nigeria cannot afford another civil war due to agitations
- The ex-diplomat, however, cautioned agitators in the southeast to weigh the negative implications of their demands
Gombe - A former envoy to Malaysia and elder statesman, Ambassador Yerima Abdullahi has urged proponents of an independent state of Biafra to weigh the implications of Nigeria's break-up and the negative effects it would have on the country.
Abdullahi, who is also a close associate of President Muhammadu Buhari, said those agitating should rather push for a referendum, saying it was better than eroding the peace and progress of the country.
Ex-diplomat says peaceful breakup better than war
He told The Punch newspaper in an interview published on Tuesday, August 10:
“This was an issue that we fought during the civil war and many of us died, some survived. Some of our leaders are still very intelligent and observant people, most of them claimed we can’t afford to fight again, which I believe in.
“But if there are people who still feel strongly that they want their own country by whatever name they call it. Whether they call it Biafra, the most sensible thing to do is to give them an opportunity to vote. They should hold a plebiscite, if they want for goodness sake let them go.”
Abdullahi lamented the negative impact of a breakup on the average Igbo businessman scattered across different parts of the country.
“The leaders that are leading them should know the implications. They should know that the Igbo man who is very prosperous in Gaboro in the eastern part of Borno state, in Ilela, Kawoje in Kebbi state.
“There are Igbos all over the country and they are not among the poor ones. So for goodness sake give them the opportunity. Let them go at least we will experience some peace, what we don’t like is dwindling or eroding the peaceful environment.
“Unfortunately, they have not asked for a plebiscite but insist on being given, I don’t know how you will split a country on a platter of gold. However, it is better to allow them to go than to say we fight another civil war.”
FG warns troublemakers in the country
Recall that on Saturday, July 24, Nigeria's minister of information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed said some people in the country are trying to tear the country apart for selfish reasons.
According to the minister, certain elements are attempting to exacerbate ethnic and religious differences in Nigeria.
He made the comment at a book presentation, adding that the challenges facing the country are neither ethnicity nor religion.
Legit.ng had earlier reported that the minister accused some Nigerians in the diaspora of spewing fake narratives against the Buhari-led administration.
Alhaji Mohammed said untrue allegations of religious persecution, political marginalisation, human rights abuses have been promoted by a section of Nigerians in the diaspora and their allies back home.
He appealed to patriotic Nigerians living abroad to usurp the initiatives and narratives from those who are bent on painting Nigeria bad amongst the comity of nations.