State governors in Nigeria on Wednesday said they have resolved not to allow the country to break up and that those inciting secession and war were only wasting their time.
The governors made the declaration shortly after meeting with Acting President Yemi Osinbajo at the Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa in Abuja in continuation of Osinbajo’s consultations aimed at calming the rising tensions resulting from growing agitations across the country.
Speaking on behalf of the governors, Oyo State Governor, Abiola Ajimobi stated that the governors and other stakeholders had agreed to keep Nigeria as an indivisible entity despite the several agitations, adding that Nigerians must be educated to know that the unity of the country was sacrosanct.
“We cannot afford to break, and anybody that is thinking of that is wasting his time, and we will not allow it, not in this country. All of us are unanimous about that,” Ajimobi said.
“Anytime you have agitation, usually there will be poverty; there will be unemployment; there will be hardship. So we should address fundamentally these areas of poverty, unemployment and hardship,” he added.
Earlier in his remarks, Acting President Yemi Osinbajo appealed to the governors to always speak up against individuals whose inflammatory statements are capable of fanning the embers of war and setting the country on fire.
“We must not allow the careless use of words, careless expressions that may degenerate into crisis. We are a people that like to talk but it is expected of us to recognise that it is those same words that can cause conflagration; that can unfortunately lead to calamity. We must be careful on how we express ourselves,” Prof. Osinbajo said.
“What we have seen in recent times is that some of the languages used have tended to degenerate badly and I think that we must begin to speak up against some of these things and ensure that we protect our democracy and our nation from the hands of rhetorics that may divide us,” he added.
Governors who attended the meeting included Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), David Umahi (Ebonyi), Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano), Nyesom Wike (Rivers), Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto) and Godwin Obaseki (Edo).
Also included were Kashim Shettima (Borno), Emmanuel Udom (Akwa Ibom), Samuel Ortom (Benue), Henry Seriake Dickson (Bayelsa), Bindo Jibrilla (Adamawa), Owelle Rochas Okorocha (Imo), Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Wiilie Obiano (Anambra), Darius Ishaku (Taraba), Yahaya Bello (Kogi), Abubakar Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Simon Lalong (Plateau) and Akinwunmi Ambode .