BY SONI DANIEL
ACCRA—AS the National Conference gets underway, Governor Isa Yuguda of Bauchi State has suggested that advocates of Nigeria’s partitioning should be stoned out of the venue of the dialogue.
Yuguda, who spoke exclusively to Vanguard after being conferred with the African Achievers Award in Education Attainment in Accra, Ghana, stated that delegates to the conference should seize the momentum to discuss what would make Nigeria greater and stronger, rather talk about disintegration.
The governor said that although he did not know the agenda of the conference, he was confident that the participants would be patriotic enough to follow the instincts of Nigeria’s founding fathers to deliberate on issues that could engender greater peace, unity and development in the country.
Yuguda said, “What I have always said is that any person who goes there to talk about partitioning Nigeria should be stoned out of the conference because I believe in the unity of this country. Our parents could not have shed blood to unite this country only for our own generation to decimate the country or partition the land and say we cannot live together.
“Nobody in Nigeria is greater than the Almighty God, who carved out a country called Nigeria. It is also the Almighty God who put the resources we are enjoying today and nobody should use religion or tribe to break our country. The conference should rather focus on issues that will unite us and not divide us.
“To me, the conference should reinforce what should unite us and that is what should be discussed. It should not be a forum for complaints about our country. The problem of Nigeria is Nigerians ourselves. We should sit down and see how to fix Nigeria. Whoever has been selected by either the President or governor should sit down as a patriot and think of how to put Nigeria on a solid pedestal.
“The participants should not be a party to those who want to divide Nigeria. They should sit down as incorruptible and transparent Nigerians and discuss the welfare of this country and bring about peace and development that we have seen in other climes,” the governor said.
Yuguda, however, said that the conference should have made room for ethnic nationalities to be represented so as to give them the opportunity to air out their views on how to move Nigeria forward and expressed the hope that the Presidency would take a second look at the issue of representations.