Nigeria will not disintegrate – Jonathan

President Jonathan on Pilgrimage to Israel [Photo: Sahara Reporters]

President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday vowed to ensure that despite its challenges, Nigeria does not disintegrate.

Speaking at an inter-faith conference in Abuja with the theme, “The imperative of interfaith understanding and cooperation for responsible politics,” the president said he believed Nigeria and Nigerians would prove wrong those who had predicted the country’s disintegration.

“Despite the fact that we have survived the civil war and continue to evolve as one nation with one destiny, we have among ourselves those (who) continue to define us and put it that we as Nigerians cannot live together”.

“But I can say categorically that Nigeria will not disintegrate, we will not fail. We will surely get over our challenges and become even a stronger nation,” he said.

The president said he was aware of the predictions that the 2015 general elections would be the basis for Nigeria’s disintegration; adding that in the opinion of the so called experts, Nigeria’s ethnic and religious differences are bound to boil over.

“They portray us doomed to fail,” he said.

Mr. Jonathan urged Nigerians not to panic because such predictions will fail as the nation will witness a free, fair, and peaceful general election, come 2015.

He said elections so far conducted under his administration have been free, fair and peaceful.

“If I was interested in manipulating elections, my party will not be losing all these governorship elections. All what we want is credible elections,” he said.

“All governorship elections that have been conducted so far, you will agree with me that it has been free and fair. I am from the PDP, the ruling party but I don’t use that strength to make sure that PDP must win always.

“PDP has lost election in Edo State, we lost election in Anambra State, we lost election in Ondo State and of course only two days back we lost another election in Osun State.

“I always tell politicians that none of our own ambition is worth the blood of any one Nigerian. If anybody wants to be a president, governor, a senator or anything, know that your ambition is not worth the blood of any Nigerian. How many of us can line up our children and kill them just because we want to be president, can we use our children for sacrifice because we want to be governors? Why do we want other people’s children to die?

Do we politicians think that we are created differently by the Almighty God? I think we are just privileged to hold the offices we are holding and we must know that. We must make sure that these incessant killings must stop,” he added.

He described Nigerian as a nation in evolution, adding that although the circumstances of Nigeria’s amalgamation in 1914 have been interpreted in different ways to suggest that the country would have been better without it, Nigeria is being regarded as the hope of the black race because of her diversity.

“They can go on debating for as long as they want but to me I am convinced beyond reasonable doubt, as they say in court, that our nation being celebrated as a great nation by other African leaders and Nigeria being the hope of the black race is because of our diversity.

“If we were just minor enclaves of people either from the south, west, east or north, none of us would have been relevant to the world today. We are relevant because of the amalgamation, because of our diversity.

“We are not relevant because we produce oil, we produce very little oil and the oil that is here is too insignificant. People must know that we are relevant and appreciated all over the world because of our diversity, because of the amalgamation”.

The President while stating that he was fully aware of the nation’s challenges, also noted that the challenges were surmountable.

“Having said this I do not run away from the fact that we have challenges just like any other country. I do not deny the fact that there is a reason for people to express fears about our future,” he said.

He chided politicians who are in the habit of “making reckless and irresponsible statements that are capable of inciting people to take laws into their hands and destabilise the country”.

“But we have to understand that these statements are not born out of the genuine reason of mood and temperament of Nigerians. Rather these enemies of peace are only trying to spoil the mood and create tempestuous temperature, but they will fail.”

The President commended the Nigeria Interfaith Initiative and commended the courage of the Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, and the Catholic Archbishop of Abuja, John Onaiyeken, for organizing the event.

“It is heart-warming that there are diverse religion of people in this conference today. This is for our good. (It) is a clear demonstration of deep religious tolerance and understanding that have permeated minds of Nigerians out to embrace one another, having realised the need for mutual tolerance and understanding”.

“The interfaith initiative as I understand it is conceived to be a unifier. It’s an avenue for all and sundry to engage with one another constructively, to understand one another, to respect another and to care for one another”.

In his welcome address, the Sultan noted that the conference was put together to check the misuse of religion for political purposes.

“We found out that politicians are misusing religion to foster enmity, violence and insecurity, therefore, we put heads together to bring this gathering together to discuss how best to go or not to go about the politics of 2015 as far as Islam and Christianity are concerned.

“It is our duties as religious leaders to debunk such ways and means those politicians go about carrying out their own agenda to get vantage position to seek political offices,” he said.

The Sultan, who commended President Jonathan for finding time within his very busy schedule to attend the meeting, noted that the action was a reflection of his commitments to creating the best atmosphere for successful elections in 2015.

Mr. Abubakar called on other politicians to emulate the president’s examples.

The Sultan said God created Nigeria and could not have been wrong in placing Nigerians where they are.

“Since we found ourselves here, we must find ways and means of living together peaceful, in brotherliness and love as enshrined in the two major holy books of Islam and Christianity”, he said.

We cannot pretend to be very religious when we do not follow the teachings of the two holy books, he added.

Also speaking at the event, Mr. Onaiyekan noted that politics has become associated with various vices and therefore called for a turn around by Nigerian politicians.

The clergyman noted that politics should be synonymous with accountability and responsibility, adding that anything else would be irresponsible politics.

Some of the attendees at the event include the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal; former Chief Justice of Nigeria, Mohammed Uwais; the Shehu of Borno, Mustapha El Kanemi; the Inspector General of Police, Suleiman Abba; and the National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.


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  • Harry

    Nobody even wants wants Nigeria to disintegrate. What the whole South wants is True Federalism and Resource Control. But the parasitic and violent Hausa/Fulani North says no because they cannot fend for themselves.

    • zygote

      Speak for yourself!

  • redeem

    i am laughing my head off–Mr President the oil thieves will never want the country to split-never——-the 36 states of the federation depend on the awoooooof oil revenue from the SS–why should they want that to end————–the boko haram war is just shakara————–the fulanis yearn to use that via APC to panic the SS–into submission————–period–U mean the fulani man will fight for us to split–where will he go–back to Chad-Senegal–Ethiopia——-Niger Republic—–Ethiopia————–where—in africa——————would they enjoy the type of wealth that they have been stealing-from the SS————-the Sudan————-Nigeria will never allow the SS—go–so dont trouble yr soul–only u do not know u hold the 4 aces——-but we must go—one day—-no matter what——-I cannot reside in a country where I do not have right to my own oil wells——————–see—–the SS is wasting time with the rest of Nigeria—–they will never get resource control–no fiscal federalism——————–no way—————the old regions would never allow such———–that is why they are demonizing u—-with the aid of APC—-in d south west—————–we gave the fulanis 50 years of our lives—————wasted it with them—————–

  • True Nigerian

    No wonder why your government is failing. You are here saying that “Nigeria cannot fail”. People who live in a real world are saying that Nigeria is already a failed state. People who don’t live in jupiter like you are saying that Nigeria is in the final stages of brokenness – the stage that precedes total cataclysm and sudden death. But in your absent mind, you think that the situation is simply an opportunity to avoid failure. You do not know that what we are looking at is simply how we can rescue Nigeria from its doldrums and state of failure in which it is already. But of course, if we have leaders like you who do not actually see that Nigeria is already a woeful failure, then the urgency of doing the needful will escape your attention, which means the failure can only get worse. And that is exactly what has happened. Nigeria has moved from bad to worse under your watchful – but visionless – eyes. Now, this your statement that “Nigeria cannot fail” explains why redeeming Nigeria from its gutter state will remain impossible until people like you stay away from the corridors of power.

    Mr President, please listen: if a country is in such a state in which its leaders and people are striving to keep it together just to prove that it cannot disintegrate, that fact alone signals the failure which you think you are about to prevent rather than reverse. But you guys are simply absent minded. A country shouldn’t be kept together just in order to prove some critics wrong. A country should be kept together if there is indeed cohesion and if it is working. And if it isn’t working, the leaders should labour to genuinely make it work, not just to keep it one for the sake of doing so only in name rather than in substance. The idea that innocent citizens of a country should be butchered daily, harrassed by soldiers, and have their future stolen by a gang of roguish politicians, and yet they would stay quiet and calm forever just in order to have the semblance of one Nigeria, is simply not sustainable. It is an idea that is stillborn and will be proven so by time.

    Many hardworking innocent Nigerians are just dying in order for you to preserve your ego of proving the Americans wrong. I wonder if you know that the Americans don’t actually have any point to prove as they have merely stated the obvious which you and your shameless self-centred predecessors should have seen and appreciated.

    Nigeria is not dying because Americans want it so. No! Far from it! Nigeria is on the verge of collapse because you and your cohorts are so wasteful, so horrifically corrupt, so self-centered, so visionless, so anti-Nigeria, so lost in your self-centeredness, so wicked, so tribalistic, so ethnocentric, so blinded and so consumed by the above vices to a point where you cannot smell the coffee even if it is poured into your nostrils.

    • usman ahmed

      From this your long essay what i understand is you want the President to Come out and say Nigeria will disintegrate ? or Nigeria is a failed state ? I worry for your kind of leadership. You want the change in Nigeria to be like magic ? rapid change ? You seem not to know the how deep in mess this country was before this administration.

  • usman ahmed

    Nigeria would not disintegrate, We should know that this administration did not create this problem, They meet a messy situation and haven’t yet been able to rectify it properly but no body will solve the problem overnight, it requires patience and with time , Nigeria will get better.

  • Jujubeans

    Yes Mr President but you and your PDP cohorts especially Olisa Methuh seem to be doing everything in your power to stoke up ethnic and religious tensions in the country. Very unprecedented and very dangerous

  • orkar

    forget it tambuwal will forever remain a traitor–the man who stole the mandate of the yorubas—and betrayed the president–because of his ijawnesss–the post of speaker was not slated for the fulanis–he stole it–Is that something that we should be proud of–I begi