The Anglican Bishop of Wusasa Diocese in Zaria, Ali Lamido, said despite the challenges confronting Nigeria, the country’s unity is still non-negotiable.
The clergyman said even if the nation breaks up as being advocated by some regional groups, it will still have to navigate numerous challenges.
He made this known on Saturday at the Anglican Diocese 20th anniversary celebration held in Zaria, Kaduna State.
He said Nigeria is extremely polarised along ethnic, sectional and tribal lines to the extent that, “the white on the National flag which signifies unity makes no sense.”
“If Nigeria splits into many parts the prevalent problem of today will still remain. If we don’t learn how to live in unity as Nigeria we will never be able to live in unity even if Nigeria splits into a hundred parts,” he added.
Mr. Lamido noted that the several calls about restructuring by different agitators will assist in addressing some of the challenges facing the country.
“Many reasons have been advanced for this (restructuring) according to the agitators and this will help us to address our challenges politically, economically, socially and religiously.”
“However there are those who oppose the restructuring and think that we should emphasise on what keeps us together rather than divide us. We feel that there should be a point of convergence where we put Nigeria ahead of our individualistic and primordial interest,” he said.
The bishop commended the Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, for his efforts in developing education, health and job creation in the state.
However, he appealed to the state government to reconsider its plan of sacking about 22,000 teachers for their incompetency.
He suggested that the government organise training and retraining for the teachers rather than fire them.
Speaking on insecurity in the state, the bishop raised concerns about the worsening kidnapping activities along the major highways that link the state.
“Kaduna state has reached a frightening proportion where kidnapping has become a daily thing. Anybody plying Kaduna Abuja road or Kaduna Birni-Guwari road does so with his heart in his mouth’’, he said.
The bishop gave awards to a former minister of defence, Theophilus Danjuma; former vice chancellor of University of Benin, Adamu Baiki and also a posthumous award to a former minister of external affairs, late Ishaya Audu. Humanitarian awards were also given to selected persons.
The event ended on Sunday with a thanksgiving service at the cathedral.