Acting President Yemi Osinbajo, H.E. Olusegun Obansanjo, Former President of Nigeria flanked by Alhaji Ahmed Joda, Former Perm. Sec., Information, Education & Industry during the “Biafra, 50 years After” Event held at the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre, Abuja. 25th May 2017
Former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo has called for dialogue with Biafran agitators.
Obasanjo speaking in Abuja on Thursday at “Biafra, 50 years After” Event forum at the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre said We should beg those agitating for Biafra that there is enough cake to share and that Nigerians must treat the country with care.
He said the country’s fundamental problem was that it had lacked a national leader. “We never had a national leader. Our leaders at the beginning were mindful of their regions. That is our problem till today,” he said.
”I have maintained that the young officers who struck in 1966 were naive but there were some element of nationalism in some of them. Be that as it may, it set us back.” He said the war showed the bad side of the country.
“The language used in the war did not help matters, the people on the Biafra side called us vandals and we called them rebels,” he said. “We thought we would end the war in three months, but it took us 30 months, and the federal side nearly lost it.
”Civil war is more difficult than fighting in a foreign land because we are fighting to unite. ”Even a soldier of mine who tried to rape a woman… I had to chase him with a gun. He did not succeed in raping the woman, and I did not have to gun him down.”
Obasanjo said some of those agitating for Biafra today, lack an understanding of what it entails. “Some of the people agitating for Biafra today were not even born then. They don’t know what it entails,” he said.
”But I think, we should even appeal to those saying they want to go, we should not tell them to go, we should make them understand that there is enough cake to share. We should message Nigeria just like in a love relationship.”