Secessionist agitations: Fashola tackles Igboho, others

Babatunde Raji Fashola


By Perpetua Onuegbu

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has advised those calling for breakup of the country to look at South Sudan and other places that have undergone such process to see if it has worked.

Fashola who gave the advise while fielding questions at a News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) flagship forum on Sunday in Abuja said no country has it all, because everyone is marginalised in one way or another.

The Minister spoke against the background of the ongoing calls for breakup of the country in the Southwest and Southeast parts of the country.

In the Southwest, agitators led by businessman and self acclaimed activist, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho are calling for creation of Yoruba nation out of Nigeria.

In the Southeast, the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, led by Nnamdi Kanu are agitating for creation of Independent Biafra Republic out of Nigeria

But Fashola said such agitators should know that no country is perfect and the desire to make the union better is an unending journey.

“No country has a perfect house, the desire to make the union better is an unending journey, every perfection is perpetually under construction.

“Those calling for these should look at South Sudan and other places and see if it has worked.

“Maybe, they should also look at their children, they should look at their children’s closest friends. Are they for ethnic groups?

“Those who want to see what is happening should go to marriage registries. These are children of another generation who don’t care about where people come from,” said the minister.

Fashola noted that the children have crossed the bridge of division “and when the old ones refused to follow; they would leave us behind and get on with their lives.

“Restructuring has been going on for a long time, not a matter of recent, everybody can speak on whatsoever he or she wants to talk about because he has the fundamental right to speech.

“But don’t try to put the house down with your words, make your case, but you must do your duty because there are no rights without duties,” he reminded the agitators.

The minister, a sports enthusiast, said that one of the ways to tackle unemployment among the youths was through sporting activities.

“You can’t talk of youth unemployment and leave sports.

“Thankfully, we have made this case and the Buhari government will perhaps be the first government to categorise sports as economic activities for the development of our economic opportunities.

“It is a matter which I have done a lot of expansive work with a several dozens of pages for sports to join those force of amateurs and professionals concerning something that is worth it.

“It’s not a talk shop but what I’m preparing requires everybody to take their roles and go and play it once we play it we will see results,” he said.


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  • In all of this , where is the NOA , is it scrapped ? It's not been functioning . This agency should plan uncountable town hall meetings , engaging the youths on a variety of issues centred on youth engagement in the management of the socio-political affairs of the country . Theatre should be engaged in effective interaction with the youth . The creative industry has a vital role to play in educating and redirecting the focus of our youths , they are highly creative and productive . These talents must be thoroughly engaged and not wasted . Once properly tapped , it's contribution remains immeasurable . We need to extensively interface to achieve the best with our youths .