By; Bala B. Bitrus, Minna.
Former Governor of Abia state and publisher of two tabloids, Orji Uzor Kalu has warned that the country is gradually drifting into anarchy and war as tribalists and champions of primordial interest swell in ranks and spread.
He therefore cautioned that citizens must rise above ethnic clevages, religiosity and hatred if Nigeria is to prosper as a country amongst comity of serious nations.
The former Governor noted that those who have suddenly become drum majors for ethnic cleansing, faith jingoists and hate mongers must be identified and fished out to stop the gradual slide to unprecedented pogrom, war and dismemberment of the country.
He spoke at the Palace of the Emir of Minna, Alh. Dr. Umar Farouk Bahago while paying homage and condolence to the traditional ruler over the demise of the former Governor of Niger state, Abdulkadir Abdullahi Kure.
Chief Orji said traditional rulers across the country must rise against the streaming hatred amongst their subjects even as he charged them to add their voices for unity, peaceful coexistence amongst their diverse subjects.
The former Governor admonished all those fanning embers of disunity and war through their reckless and unguarded utterances to stop such hate speeches and desist from setting Nigerians against each other. He warned that no nation ever survives two civil wars. “Nigeria cannot afford another civil war’’ he added.
Speaking about his late friend and former colleague, Chief Orji Uzo Kalu recalled that late Kure was a highly principled person who stood firmly for what is right, what is proper and just.
While paying glowing tributes to the late ex Governor, Kalu said “Kure was more than a friend to me. It was because of my personal relationship with him that I earned the traditional title of ‘Bariazaki of Lapai’, Kalu said stressing that the two of them had built friendship and bonds across bridges and beyond boundaries.
The former Governor, now a newspaper columnist and writer on topical national issues, cautioned politicians and sectionalists especially those fanning embers of war to desist and allow Nigeria to be.
He pleaded with the traditional institutions in Nigeria to assist in building bridges of understanding amongst their diverse subjects of different religious, cultural, ethnic and political divides on the Nigerian project which he said must not be compromised by any other interest or reason.
Orji who hammered on peaceful coexistence amongst all the entities in Nigeria, said God couldn’t have made any mistake in creating the entity, Nigeria or in creating us as a people within the territorial space called Nigeria with its multi religious, tribes and ethnic diversities.
He called on President Muhammadu Buhari to promptly end the senseless killings, ethnic cleansing and destruction that has been sweeping through communities in southern parts of Kaduna state.
Kalu said it was unfair that innocent citizens were being massacred in cold blood on a daily basis while the state government appears clueless as to what to do to arrest the orchestrations.
He warned that if the ugly development was not checked, it could cascade into a national calamity.