Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), has cleared the air on his remarks at the 60th Independence anniversary service held at the National Ecumenical Centre on Sunday.
Mustapha who represented Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the event, was quoted to have said that there are cracks that could lead to a break up of the nation if not carefully addressed.
“For us in Nigeria, Nehemiah should be taken as a metaphor for those Nigerians who either reside in Nigeria or outside, to cry to God to use the abandoned opportunities in Nigeria to address our challenges of nation-building,” said the SGF at the event.
“Fortunately for us, our walls are not yet broken, but there are apparent cracks that could lead to a break if not adequately addressed.”
The statement had drawn the condemnation of the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) who, while admitting that indeed there were cracks in the nation, noted that it was in the Vice President’s place to calm the nerves rather than making pronouncements that could worsen the situation.
“The cracks are unhealthy, but we expect the Vice President to calm nerves and not make a pronouncement that will aggravate the situation,” said Emmanuel Yawe, ACF National Publicity Secretary.
“The ACF is hopeful that Nigeria will overcome its current travails as it did in the past and even overcame a fratricidal war to break up Nigeria. To do this, Nigerian leaders like Osinbanjo should watch their words.”
However, in a press statement signed and issued on Tuesday, the SGF clarified that he and Osinbajo were “firmly and irrevocably committed to the ideal of one indivisible Nigerian nation”.
He also expressed his deep appreciation to President Muhammadu Buhari for his consistent effort to strengthen the unity of the Nigerian nation.
The SGF added that “any suggestion to the contrary is a clear misrepresentation of our common position as a government”.
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