Nigeria’s 60th Independence: ACF Warns Osinbajo Over Utterance, Ohanaeze, Others Backed VP

Different reactions trailed the Vice President Osinbajo’s speech on Sunday as different socio-cultural and socio-political groups divided over the Vice-President’s comment.

In the view of socio-political groups as Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Afenifere and the Pan Niger Delta Forum, on Monday, said Vice-President warning that cracks in the country could lead to its breakup should not be taken for granted.

The groups, according to a report by PUNCH, agreed with the legal luminary that Nigerians could not continue to live in denial.

However, in the view of the northern socio-political group, the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF), even though the group admitted the existence of unhealthy cracks in Nigeria’s wall, it still believed the Vice president was not in position to make such a statement, claiming it could worsen the tension in the country.

Osinbajo, who was represented by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha, at an interdenominational church service in Abuja on Sunday to mark Nigeria’s 60 th independence anniversary, said, “Our walls are not yet broken, but there are obvious cracks that could lead to a break, if not properly addressed.” At the service, the SGF read Osinbajo’s speech.

In its reaction, the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, agreed with the Vice President that cracks in Nigeria could lead to its breakup.

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The National Publicity Secretary and acting Secretary General of Ohanaeze, Prince Uche Achi- Okpaga, who spoke to one of our correspondents, said the Vice President’s concerns weren’t different from what other Nigerians had been saying.

Government doing nothing to address cracks, prayers not enough, says Ohanaeze.

Achi-Okpaga said government was not making efforts to address the problem, adding that prayers were not enough.

Although he described Osibanjo as a man of unimpeachable character, who knows where the problems of Nigeria lie, he noted that it was not enough to ask Nigerians to pray.

Achi-Okpaga said, “By his pedigree as the Vice President of Nigeria, law professor and pastor, he knows where the shoes pinch the government.

“In so many areas he is right. You can’t take his words for granted. He has been inside there and he knows where the shoes pinch the government and the people of Nigeria. So when he drops a word like that you can always know he is serious and he knows the nitty-gritty of what he is saying.

“What he is saying is not even different from what Nigerians are saying. This thing is not rocket science; we are seeing it. Look at the economy, the prices of the commodities have increased. Look at the electricity tariff increase and fuel pump price hike. Is it the gift that the government is giving Nigerians at the heat of this COVID-19 pandemic that has ravaged Nigeria economically?

“Look at security; how Fulani herdsmen are ravaging communities and agricultural lands; killing Nigerians every day. The government is aware of this and no effort is being made to stem it.”

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