Sunday, December 20, 2015

We Need Better Communication, Not Civil War, Obasanjo Tells Pro-Biafra Agitators

Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has stressed the need for Nigerians to embrace peace and dialogue instead of beating war drums, saying what the nation needs right now is better communication and not to go on another round of civil war.
Reacting to the spate of protests and demonstrations by pro-Biafra agitators in some parts of South-east and Lagos recently, the former president, who is also a civil war veteran, said: “Our differences could only be addressed when issues are discussed instead of going to war.”
He said, “We do not need another civil war. We had fought one before. I was part of it.”
Olusegun-Obasanjo-011615.jpg - Olusegun-Obasanjo-011615.jpg
Speaking at the unveiling of a banquet hall in his name built by Executive Vice President, Centre for Policy and Foreign Engagement, Dr. Agbai Eke Agbai, at the burial of his mother, Mama Enyidya Beatrice Agbai, in Abiriba, Abia State, Obasanjo said, “I saw with my eyes. I heard with my ears. I smelled with my nose. What we need is better communication. And I am here to communicate with you.”
He stated further, “What I enjoy most is the cultural diversity. Earlier in the week, I was in Benue State and I enjoyed the cultural dance. Since I arrived here yesterday I have enjoyed the cultural dances. What we need to address is how to reduce unemployment, how to reduce poverty, and how to hold our leaders accountable to their promises.”
Supporters of pro-Biafra groups had staged protests on major streets in Owerri, Onitsha, Port Harcourt and some other major cities in the South-east following the arrest of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, who was ordered to be released last week.
Kanu, who operated an illegal radio station- Radio Biafra, had called for a separate state of Biafra.
The demonstrators, comprising members of Movement for the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) and the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), chanted pro-Biafra songs and war songs.
The spate of demonstration by the separatist groups was centred on an issue that had again exposed deep and longstanding ethnic fault lines in the country.
A previous unilateral declaration of an independent Republic of Biafra in 1967 led to a brutal civil war that left more than one million dead in nearly three years of fighting.
By Festus Akanbi
 Courtesy of This Day Live

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