By Omeiza Ajayi
ABUJA – A chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress APC, Comrade Timi Frank, has urged the federal government and leaders of northern extraction, including traditional rulers “to beg the youths of the region to refrain from statements and actions that could build up tension across the country”.
In a statement issued Wednesday in Abuja, Frank begged the northern youths to give peace a chance, calling on security agencies to rise up to the task of protecting both northerners in the South and the Southerners in the North.
Frank, who was reacting to a “quit notice” issued to the Igbos by some coalition of Northern youth groups cautioned Nigerian youths not to give in to the antics of the few who want the country divided at all cost.
At a joint press conference addressed Tuesday in Kaduna, the Arewa Citizens for Change, Arewa Youth Consultative Forum, Arewa Youtn Development Foundation, Arewa Students Forum and Northern Emancipation Network had given the Igbos in the region to leave latest by October 1.
The Northern youths had said: “that in the event that the Igbos are not allowed to pull out, the North shall divorce this marriage that has never been convenient to any of the parties.
“That as a prelude we call on all Igbos currently residing in any part of Northern Nigeria to relocate within two weeks and northerners in the East should do likewise.
“That northern leaders are hereby warned against further insisting on this union with the Igbo or any other part of Nigeria that is disposed to self determination.”
But while calling for caution, Frank said as youths, “our role is to preach peace and not to give in to all forms of sentiments. It is expected of our generation to right the wrongs of the past, by competitively coming up with innovations that will develop our country fast for the sake of our children and not to continue to fan the embers of disunity”.