Cardinal Onaiyekan faults those saying Nigeria’s unity non-negotiable


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Former President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Cardinal John Onaiyekan says the unity of Nigeria is negotiable, urging Nigerians to disregard those expressing contrary opinions.

The former Catholic Archbishop of Abuja said that Nigeria was in danger and negotiation appeared the only way to avoid “self-destruction”.

Onaiyekan stated this in a statement over the weekend after the Tiv Professionals Group (TPG) paid him a courtesy visit in the Federal Capital Territory.

“We must admit that the unity of Nigeria is negotiable. Negotiation means you give and take. In fact, right now, Nigeria is up for negotiation. I think that is where different groups come in to make their demands.

“The truth is that the nation is in danger and whatever anybody can do to prevent the worse, they should do it. There must be a way that we can save ourselves from self destruction. We cannot continue like this. Very few people are happy with the status quo. If we do not talk, we might end up killing one another,” Onaiyekan said.

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The respected cleric criticised the National Assembly over alleged dereliction of duty.

“Under normal circumstances, it is the National Assembly that should handle these kind of things. The system is set up so that the National Assembly can challenge the government. But we have reached a situation where we have a National Assembly that is proud to be a rubber stamp. Somehow every member of that House has remained silent. We realise that there is no difference between the political parties;whether PDP or APC, nobody complains. Which means the things that are serious are not discussed.

“Unfortunately, we have reached a stage in Nigeria where we cannot trust politicians. TIV land, where are your politicians, what are they saying? What are the issues that they talk about in political gatherings? Are they blind to the fact that there’s a bigger thing than who will win the next election?” Onaiyekan queried.


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