As the nation marks 59th anniversary of political independence amidst multifarious challenges, Governor Aminu Bello Masari of Katsina State has challenged Nigerians to remain steadfast in our resolve to have a more progressive and united Nigeria.
The Governor, whose thoughts were contained in a statement signed by the Director General, Media and Publicity, Abdu Labaran Malumfashi, observed that no nation developed whose citizens’ conduct is constantly in conflict with its avowed aspirations.
He said for Nigeria to develop into the country of our dream, we should make no room for tendencies that will exploit our fault lines and pitch one section against another in a needless confrontation.
“As the nation ages, our attitude should reflect the journey which has brought us this far together, and reason behind the journey, he said.
Governor Masari expressed worry at our tendency to regard the travails of the section of the country that is not ours with lack of concern, saying that such attitude is not helpful to the collective interest of the nation.
“In the race towards building a better, stronger and more united nation, we should not allow divisive sentiments to pull the baton out of our hands.
“We would do well to realise that whatever affects one part of Nigeria affects all of Nigeria, and it is in the interest of us all to collectively face any challenge affecting a section of the country, as doing otherwise will only give room for the challenge to envelope the whole country.
“The issue of banditry and other security challenges has nothing to do with politics, religion or ethnicity, because criminality neither knows nor respects boundaries.
“Let us first save the country before we go into politics because, first, there has to be a country before its governance could be contested for.
“Let us also put aside our different tongues and creeds aside and confront our challenges as Nigerians”.
The Katsina State Governor especially took exception to the profiling of entire ethnic or religious group on account of the infractions of a few of its members, saying that such attitude only fuels disharmony in the society.
“We cannot castigate a whole tribe or a whole religion or a whole region because one or two of its members are involved in some criminal activities, it is injustice.
“We have to tailor our utterances, pronouncements, actions and inactions to fit our vision for a stronger and united nation, because we cannot wish for a united Nigeria while the narrative sends a different signal. In all we say or do, let there be no ambiguity in our belief in a united Nigeria”, the Governor emphasized.
Abdu Labaran Malumfashi,