…Calls for new tribe of committed Nigerians
By Johnbosco Agbakwuru
VICE President Yemi Osinbajo on Monday told the advocates of the breakup of Nigeria that if it happens, people will require visa to move around.
The Vice President stated this at the presidential villa, Abuja while participating virtually at the 12th Asiwaju Bola Tinubu Colloquium held in Kano.
He said holding the event in Kano underscored the point that the country was stronger and better together.
According to him, “By this gesture governor Ganduje has helped us to tell two stories; this is the first time that the colloquium is being hosted outside Lagos and Abuja, the capital city.
“And it is befitting that Kano should be that place, this city of radical and progressive ideas and ideologies, a city whose leading political lights have been left of centre, which is the dominant tendency within our great party the APC.
“Second, it helps us to underscore the point that this country and its people are stronger and more powerful together than apart. For the purveyors of breaking up into small components/countries, perhaps they should be reminded that we would not have been able to accept Governor Ganduje’s offer to come to Kano at short notice since we would all have needed visas to come to Kano.”
The Vice President called for a new set of Nigerians across all divides who are committed to a country operated on high values integrity, justice, love, among others.
He said, “We believe that we now have an opportunity to increase the numbers of a new tribe of Nigerians; a tribe of men and women of all faiths, tribes and ethnicities committed to a country run on high values of integrity, hard work, justice, and love of country.
“A tribe of men and women who are prepared to make the sacrifices and self-constraints that are crucial to building a strong society; who are prepared to stick together, fight for equity, and justice side by side.
“A tribe consisting of professionals, businessmen, politicians, religious leaders, and all others who believe that this new Nigeria is possible and already we have built and are building the building blocks for this new Nigeria.”
Prof. Osinbajo extolled the leadership style of the former Lagos state governor, saying that central to that style is; first a belief that development, economic, social, political development depends on enabling a contest of ideas.
He opined that, “Whether that is within a political party or its caucuses, a cabinet meeting or even just thinking through a problem.
“By exposing his thoughts and ideas constantly to debate and contestation, he refines his views constantly and is at the cutting edge of issues as varied as artificial intelligence, vaccines, to even what sort of legal processes or arguments should be filed in a matter in court!
“I remember once when he was suggesting to me that he thought it was better that we should contest jurisdiction in a particular case and so many other times when he had introduced his own legal thoughts to a matter. I have had to keep reminding him that he is not a lawyer! And I am sure others have had to remind him several times that he is not many different things.
“Second, and perhaps more importantly, because he is not afraid of having his ideas scrutinized, criticized by even subordinates, he is able to lead a vast array of persons of strong, deeply held convictions, and a variety of ideologies.
“The third in that leadership style is that he is completely comfortable engaging across ethnic, religious, and partisan divides.
“It is his belief that national development is only possible where we, the leaders are constantly interrogating ideas, perspectives, and opinions which are what led some of us who worked with him through the years, to formalize our constant debates so that on his birthday we open up discussions on some issues or issues of national importance.”
He observed the latest Tinubu Colloquium came at a time when a combination of challenges worsened by the fallouts of a global pandemic has created a storm of socio-economic problems.
“The default mode of some at times like this is to stoke tendencies viewpoints and opinions that threaten the federation and our unity,” he lamented.
Vanguard News Nigeria