From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has warned those inciting civil unrest in Nigeria that the country cannot withstand another civil war.
Osinbajo spoke on Tuesday night at an interactive section with Anambra State All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirants at an event organised by the state chapter of the APC Patriots.
The Vice President also made an appeal to political elites to break their silence on happenings in the country, especially in regards to calls for disintegration.
Osinbajo further warned that the negative implications of the silence of the political class on the spate of attacks in the South East and other parts of the country will have monumental consequences on national life.
‘The thing about the kind of conflict in this part of the world – developing countries – is that it is usually a war without end. Everyone who thinks they have some monies stored up somewhere will eventually run out of money.
‘Everyone who thinks they can go and hide somewhere won’t even find a place to hide; in the end, everyone will suffer. Even if you don’t suffer, your parents, children, young and old people and your relations will suffer. We cannot afford a war in this country, we can’t afford it,’ the Vice President warned with a tone of seriousness.
He also cautioned that the more political elites maintained remained silent and failed to address the brewing unrest, the more the situation will continue to slide.
While warning that failure to act now will be exposing the country’s future to danger, Osinbajo prayed that the country would never know conflict.
‘I pray that our country will never know conflict, but I know that every conflict is as a result of elite failure to speak up the truth and tell the truth to their communities,’ he said.
He maintained that at the end of the day, it is the political elite that determines what happens in every society, emphasising that keeping quiet could lead to a more dangerous situation.
The Vice President expressed optimism, however, that the elite could make a great difference just by the words they speak.
‘If we don’t speak up against disunity, if we keep quiet and remain under the radar, the enemies of peace and those who want to promote disunity will have their way. And when this happens, we will find ourselves running helter shelter,’ he said.
On the forthcoming APC Anambra governorship primary slated for June 26, the Vice President assured all the aspirants of a level playing field for the best aspirant emerged as candidate.
He charged them to work in unity and support whomever emerges as the standardbearer of the party at the November 6 governorship election in the state, charging the would-be candidate to avoid a ‘winner takes all’ mentality.
Earlier, the Coordinator of Anambra State APC Patriots, organisers of the Governorship Aspirants’ interactive session, Hon Dozie Ikedife Jnr, pointed out that the interface was designed to bring all the aspirants together to interact with each other and other party stakeholders in an atmosphere of concord and camaraderie.
The Patriots had appealed to the national leadership of the APC to ensure that the process for the June 26 primary is free, fair and transparent with all the aspirants provided a level playing field to run.
Nine of the 12 aspirants at the interactive session include: Senator Emmanuel Andy Uba, Dr George Nnadubem Moghalu, Dr Chidozie Nwankwo, Engr Johnbosco Onunkwo and Sir Azuka Okwuosa.
Others include: Mr Paul Izuchukwu Orajiaka, Chief Ben Etiaba Jnr, Col Geoffrey Onyejegbu (retd) and Maxwell Okoye.