A senator, Abdullahi Adamu (APC-Nasarawa), says it is impossible for Nigeria to break along regional lines, because southern businessmen have more investments in the North than the South.
Mr Adamu said this when he hosted Tanzania High Commissioner to Nigeria, Benson Bana, on Friday in Abuja.
Mr Adamu’s comment is also against the backdrop of an upsurge recently in nationalist agitations including a clamour in the South East for the formation of the Republic of Biafra.
“I can tell you authoritatively that the investment of Igbo businessmen in this country is more in the north, than in the eastern region itself,” Mr Adamu said.
“I can also say on authority. There are probably more Igbo people living outside the South-east than those living in the area.
“Now does it speak well of us when we start advocating that everybody should go back to his or her place?
“We are not being realistic with ourselves. I do not have a problem in democratic setting where you criticise me genuinely,’’ he said.
According to him, “I can accommodate your criticism, I can also have something to say about you, but let there be the spirit of keeping the country together.
“Let there be the spirit that we are brothers, we are one another’s keepers as professed by the Bible and the Qur’an,’’ Mr Adamu said.
He advised ”those beating the drums of war” to desist.
“Those of us who are old enough to have seen the Nigeria Civil War will not pray for anything like that again. I do not want to leave this country. I do not know any other country, I am not dreaming about having any other country but Nigeria.
“So, anybody who does not want this country can go where he wants to go,’’ Mr Adamu said.
The lawmaker decried the high level of sabotage of government’s programmes in the country.
Mr Bana, who shared the same sentiment with Mr Adamu, said nation building in Africa had always been a process.
“It is not an event, disintegrating a nation is not the best option for Africa.
“I read the newspapers. In one of my readings I came to scan through an interview you granted, you discussed extensively, matters relating to the federation.
“And I looked at the argument you were posing, they were arguments of a distinguished senator, a patriotic leader, an astute politician of the current times.
“And the arguments you raised resonated very well with my country. Tanzania is a union of two sovereign states, Zanzibar and Tanganyika.
“The journey for the union was not that smooth, many people wanted to know whether we can live with the union for a long time or there will be a point where people need to disintegrate,’’ he said.
Mr Bana said the amendment process of the 1999 Constitution was a sensitive issue that the country’s leaders must take seriously.
“Constitution making processes are processes that are sensitive, they should not fall into the hands of the wrong persons.
“They have to be protected, there should be boundaries,’’ he said.
As Nigeria battles severe economic and political challenges including spiking insecurity, different regional groups have been advocating for secession in recent months.
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