By Levinus Nwabughiogu
ABUJA-Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, has said that unless Nigerians shun sectional sentiments and promote national interest, the country would not achieve true independence.
He enjoined the people to strengthen the bond of unity and cohesion amongst them to enthrone common interest and destiny in the process of nation building.
Dogara’s submission was contained in his goodwill message to mark Nigeria’s 57th Independence Anniversary.
In a statement issued by his Special Adviser on Media and Public Affairs, Turaki Hassan, the Speaker noted that Nigeria would only attain greatness in an atmosphere of peace, unity and stability.
He called on the citizens to ignore every harbinger of hate, division and violence.
He said: “May I use the occasion of this year’s Independence Anniversary to urge us all to reflect on those things that unite and bring us together as a people, and shun individuals and groups with divisive tendencies.
“At this time, more than any other, we must adopt the right strategies and utilize the advantages of our diversity to our benefit as well as blend our differences for positive outcomes in the process of building the Nigeria of our dream.”
The speaker also urged Nigerians to eschew ethnic, religious, sectional interest and come together as one people and “one nation bound in freedom, peace and unity” as encapsulated in the country’s National Anthem.
He said “True independence will continue to elude us until and unless we attaind independence from tribalism, sectionalism, primodialism, religious extremism, partisan political bigotry, materialism, corruption and ancillary forms of retrogressive tendencies that threatened to consign us to the forgotten age.”
Dogara assured that the House of Representatives will continue to provide the needed legislative framework that would further galvanize the people and unite the nation as well as help fine solutions to the country’s socio-political challenges, urging the citizens not to moan in despair, as the country would surely come out stronger from its current challenges.