President Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated his conviction in the indivisibility of Nigeria.
He reaffirmed the country’s unity is non-negotiable.
The President restated his conviction to Kogi Governor Yahaya Bello on Thursday during a visit to brief him of progress so far made in resolving the north/south food blockage crisis.
The Governor, who called on Buhari in the company of the Chief of Staff to the President, Professor Ibrahim Gambari, also said the President also expressed concerns over the issue of insecurity in the country.
Governor Bello had been at the forefront of efforts to resolve the ethnic misunderstanding between northern traders, under the aegis of Amalgamated Union of Food and Cattle Dealers of Nigeria (AFUCDN) and their southwestern compatriots, which led to a blockade of food items and livestock from entering the south.
However, the Governor, as well as other notable Nigerians, including former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, negotiated a truce on Wednesday, leading to restoration of movement of food and livestock to the south.
According to him, while reacting to the agreement and the peace process, Buhari had commended the efforts put into reaching peace.
“Mr. President expressed concern over the insecurity in the land. As the commander in chief, he has assured everyone of us based on his security meeting yesterday, that Nigeria is going to be secured, safe and prosperous and I believe in him 100 percent.
“He urged everyone of us to continue to go about our lawful businesses in the country, that Nigeria’s unity is not negotiable, that Nigeria must be united, peaceful and that Nigeria must be prosperous,” he said.
He waived off insinuations that he got involved in the peace process just to build a profile for himself against the 2023 presidential election, as he has been said to have mounted his campaigns for the purpose.
He said his intentions and reasons were genuine, adding he was in the peace process on the orders of the President to nip a potentially dangerous situation in the bud and save the country from an unimaginable consequence.
“I am not running away from the fact that numerous teaming youths, Nigerians, women, youths, leaders and followers, various groups are calling me to contest for the presidential election in 2023.
“That is their right, it is within their purview to ask for that or demand that I run as their representative in government today.
“But I have an assignment to carry out, the assignment of ensuring that my state is safe and secured.
“We’re doing that effectively by providing leadership in Kogi State. We’re taking Kogi State from where it used to be in the past, to a more united prosperous, safe and secured Kogi state.
“Today, they’re asking me to replicate the same in the national level that is within their rights. But to say that, when there is another call of an assignment from the Commander-in-Chief on me, to ensure that a little problem that can be solved, should not be allowed to snowball into a larger crisis that would put this country on unknown collision cause, I think I will never hesitate to take up that responsibility, and that I have done successfully to the glory of God and to the satisfaction of majority of Nigerian and Mr. President.”
Credit THE NATION