Enough Of Hate Speeches


In recent times, hate and divisive speeches have been promoted to a game between some youths in Northern Nigeria and their counterparts in the South-East. This unhealthy development has, in no mean measure, heightened tension in the country, as well as further fanned the ember of ethnicity between the North and the South.
With no end in sight to the inherent danger these divisive statements pose to the corporate existence of the country, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo began interactive sessions with leaders of the various constituting  units of the federation to douse the tension created by the actions of the various groups.
During his consultative meetings with Northern monarchs, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, two weeks ago, the Acting President, for the umpteenth time, warned that the Federal Government would deploy the necessary security apparatus to punish anyone who threatens the peace and unity of the country.
The Tide recalls that the whole episode started with the increasing agitation for secession by the Igbo youths under the aegis of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB)  and the May 30th sit-at-home order by the separatist group, during which economic and social activities of some states, particularly in the South-East  were virtually paralysed.  In reaction to the IPOB actions, 16 Nigerian youth groups under the umbrella of the Arewa Youths Consultative Forum (AYCF) issued a quit notice to Igbos residing and doing business in the Northern part of the country, asking them to leave the region on or before October 1, this year or risk unpleasant consequences.
As if that was not enough, a coalition of the Niger Delta militants rose from a meeting in Port Harcourt recently, and gave a three-month notice to the Federal Government to return all oil blocs being controlled by northerners to the people of the oil producing states or face violent attacks on oil facilities. Hinging their action on the ultimatum given by the coalition of Northern youths to the Igbos, the group berated the Presidency and security agencies for not acting swiftly by arresting those Arewa youths and their masterminds.
Given the ill-feelings these threats and counter-threats have generated in the country, The Tide calls for caution and advises Nigerians to desist from making provocative statements capable of plunging the country into chaos.
We are dismayed that elders and leaders from different parts of the country kept quiet for too long and watched their youths to go haywire on matters relating to the country’s peaceful co-existence, security and unity.
It is our opinion that Nigeria’s unity is sacrosanct and as such, the people, no matter how highly placed, must exercise restraint in their utterances and actions. Nigeria can not afford to break up through war.
For us, the parley between the Federal Government and leaders of various ethnic nationalities is a step in the right direction, but we insist that while the Acting President continues with his consultative meetings with the leadership of the various groups, a retraction of the quit notice by Arewa youths should be made without delay, failure for which they must be arrested and prosecuted to serve as a deterrent to others.
Meanwhile, we urge the Niger Delta militants to also shield their swords and allow peace to reign.
While we commend the Federal Government’s commitment to the task of promoting peace and unity of the country through concerted dialogue, we urge that no people of any section of the country should be treated as a sacred cow, particularly when it has to do with the issue of crime and criminality against the state.
As a way out of the current logjam, we urge the National Assembly to consider the report of the 2014 National Conference, espeically the sections that concern restructuring of the Nigerian federation, with respect to true federalism, resource control and devolution of power.
Indeed, The Tide urges the Presidency to send the report to NASS as an executive bill, because we strongly believe that Nigeria will be better as one and indivisible entity than being divided into several nations.