Secession: Those agitating for war haven’t seen one – Akwa Ibom senator
Senator for Akwa Ibom North-West, Senator Chris Ekpenyong says those calling for war as a means of achieving self-determination are making a great mistake.
The former Deputy Governor of Akwa Ibom State disclosed this while speaking on the state of the nation.
Ekpenyong, who said he witnessed the Nigerian Civil War, explained that it was easy for those beating drums of war now to do so because they have never seen one.
However, he said that the Niger Delta would not hesitate to secede from Nigeria if agitators for Oduduwa and Biafra republics succeed.
The senator said the Niger Delta has been marginalised despite its enormous contribution to the nation’s purse.
On the agitations, the senator said, “I don’t know what happened this morning, I prayed to God to strengthen our unity. I believe in unity in diversity. No tribe in Nigeria is so self-sufficient.
“God blessed every part of this country with both human and natural resources. The North with its vast landmass produces potatoes, onions, Gold, Tin ore, tomatoes, and many others. Bitumen, Cocoa are found in the West and from South East down to the South-South, we have oil palm, coal, limestone, and the mighty crude oil which is the only thing that is keeping Nigeria one today.
“So for me, if Oduduwa and Independent People of Biafra (IPOB) are saying they want to secede, I am waiting for them to take the first step, then we will follow after them.
“We are marginalised, humiliated, oppressed, yes, but let us try not to make the mistake of the past.
“I saw the civil war even though I was very young. Those boys that are agitating for war today have not seen war. I believe that there is something fundamentally wrong with Nigeria, but our diversity can work if we do the right thing.
“Unfortunately, you see one part of the nation oppressing the rest. Today all security apparatus are headed by one tribe, which has never happened in the history of Nigeria.
“We have over 250 tribes in Nigeria, and why can’t we interact with each other, coexist, why can’t we respect every group, instead of one ethnic group oppressing others.
“I was six years old when Nigeria had its independence and after 60 years I am still crying about the marginalisation, subjugation, denial of rights, oppression of people of my area, the then eastern region.
“So, I wouldn’t say no to Oduduwa, I wouldn’t say no to IPOB because it could be they feel that their people have been pushed to the wall for too long.”