“I agree that there has always been one misunderstanding or the other, for a long time, but what we are witnessing in recent past is alarming. It is taking a dangerous turn. The signs are ominous.”
These were the verdict of the former Chief of General Staff under the late General Sanni Abacha military regime, Lieutenant General Donaldson Oladipupo Diya in a message he personally signed to celebrate his 77th birthday anniversary.
Diya stressed that Nigerians needed to come together to confront their common enemy, which he said is “war and its apostles – so that we can rise together as one.
“I agree that there has always been one misunderstanding or the other, for a long time, but what we are witnessing in recent past is alarming. It is taking a dangerous turn. The signs are ominous.
“We seem to have forgotten that, fundamentally, we are brothers and sisters from one source, in one nation with a common destiny. Let us pursue peace and eschew violence at all costs, by all means.
“Many actors have made their positions known. A lot more have pointed accusing fingers. We have turned the table and changed the narratives, just to suit our positions. One thing is certain, we cannot continue like this. Enough is enough.
“Let us cease the practice of name-calling. There is no part of the nation that does not have its inherent security challenges. Hence, the first solution is to look inwards. Let us do a soul searching.
“More work however need to be done by the government to solve the perennial problem of banditry, farmer – herder crisis and all forms of terrorism in the land.
“Sociologists have always warned us that “the rumours of war always justifies armament.” Armament itself heightens the possibility of war. We must avoid a repeat of mistakes of the past. Peace is all we need.
“The Political Class must play by the rules and observe the thin line that separates Politics from Governance. Security matters should not be toyed with on the alter of politicking.
“Hate speech, fake news, as well as inciting ethnic-religious acts should be completely eradicated.
“I have fought many wars in my life. I have been out there all my life. I know the feel, the smell, the agony and the long time implications of wars. After a war, there must still be a dialogue, so it is better to dialogue and talk our way out of the problems.”