Mr Ken Ukaoha, President, National Association of Nigerian Traders (NANTS), has urged the Etsu of Kwali, Shaban Nizazo, to work closely with other traditional rulers to promote peace in the country.
Ukaoha made the appeal in Kwali, FCT on Thursday when the leadership of the association paid a courtesy visit to the Etsu.
He said the visit was a way to douse the tension created by the recent quit notice issued the Igbo by some Northern youths.
According to him, the issue has serious implication on the unity, existence and prosperity of the country.
“We appreciate acting President Yemi Osinbajo’s effort to address the issues.
“But it is also important for traditional rulers to come together to fashion ways to talk to the youth about peace.
“The traditional rulers have serious roll to play in peace building as they are well respected in the society,’’ Ukaoha said.
He said that although traders are the bedrock of the economy, they are always the first to be affected in any crisis.
Ukaoha called for peaceful consistence among Nigerians saying no country can develop in crisis.
He said the association would collaborate with the council in the doing business, establishment of industries and educational sector.
In his response, Nizazo, Kwali said the council had been a peaceful place and had hosted Igbos for many years.
He said that the country would be stronger when united adding that those inciting for crisis had no knowledge of the last civil war.
Nizazo said that the Niger Delta agitation and call for Republic of Biafra State are national issues that would be resolved.
“It is when we are united that the country will develop economically and this can be achieved through our collective strength,’’ he said.
Nizazo said there would be a meeting of chiefs from different tribes in the council on June 23, to discuss the need for peaceful coexistence.
He said that the traders were important stakeholders that are closer to the grassroots and urged them to make trading more qualitative.
According to him, the people in the area are mostly farmers and large producers of yams.
He however noted that yams produced in the area often get rotten and wasted.
He called on the traders to ensure that yams are among products that are exported in the country.
“The association can go into basic research to see how yams can be turned into finished products that can be exported,’’ Nizazo said.
He ascribed youth restiveness in the country to lack of employment and leadership failure in some quarters.