The statement credited to the Zamfara State Governor, Alhaji Bello Matawalle, on alleged killings of Northerners in the South and his threat of reprisals in the north is *baseless*, distasteful, reckless, insensitive and irresponsible, The Yoruba Peace and Leadership Initiative (TYLPI) has said.
In a statement by its Director of Publicity, Mr. Tunde Ipinmisho, TYLPI said it was unguarded statements like the one made by Governor Matawalle that triggered off the crisis that landed the nation in a 30 month civil war that claimed millions of lives and arrested its development.
It said Matawalle’s statement smirks of dangerous desperation by those who believe that the nation must travel on a trajectory pre-determined by them alone.
TYLPI also said the unguarded statement by the Zamfara State Governor reflected poorly on the nation’s leadership recruitment process.
It praised the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) for its timely and courageous condemnation of Governor Matawalle’s statement.
Noting that Nigeria was in very difficult times, the group said the least that was expected of leaders across the nation was for them to guard their utterances and let out only words that build bridges among the people rather than raise tension.
Describing Matawalle’s statement as akin to a man who attempts to set fire to the roof of the house in which he is sleeping, the Yoruba group said those who ignite the fire of crisis ought to be well aware that nobody can predict the direction the fire of instability would spread or its possible victims.
What the nation needed now, the group said, were genuine patriots who would proffer workable solutions to the issues afflicting the nation.
“It behoves all men and women of goodwill to disperse, with responsible conduct and utterances, the evil cloud hanging over Nigeria. Nobody knows who will be swept away by the flood, should the rain be allowed to fall,” the group added.
The Yoruba group said every part of Nigeria had people from other ethnic groups living with them and urged leaders to be careful so as not to set the country on fire.