Professor of Political Economy, Prof. Pat Utomi has said that a repeat of the Nigerian Civil War would break up the nation.
He stated this in an address during a ceremony to mark the 50th Anniversary of the end of the war in Lagos. The Nigerian Civil War lasted from July 6, 1967, to January 15, 1970.
Utomi also advocated a decentralised system of government to move governance closer to the people.
According to him, only a decentralised government can address the conditions that led to the war and prevent a recurrence.
“Government should be decentralised and moved closer to the people for effectiveness,” the academic-cum-politician said.
Utomi decried the political party system operational in Nigeria, noting that the country could not make progress with it.
He explained that a repeat of the three-year Civil War could have different results as the international community now recognises the right to self-determination.
“We must address the issues that led to the Civil War. I can tell you that if the Biafran war is fought today, there will be no Nigeria because the international community now recognises self-determination,” he said.
Meanwhile, Utomi described the war which claimed “two million lives” as “completely unnecessary”.
“In my view, the Nigerian civil war was completely unnecessary. It was something that honest conversation would have taken care of.
“The path of progress that the country was travelling could have continued. Many of the decisions we have taken as a country since then to prevent what went wrong have actually taken us back as a people,” he said on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics.