KADUNA, NIGERIA, President Muhammadu Buhari has reminded Nigerians of the need to exploit their diversity to promote unity and build a prosperous nation guided by honesty and integrity.
In a message to mark the 50 years commemoration of the demise of Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto and Premier of Northern Nigeria, held in Kaduna in northern Nigeria Thursday with the theme “50 Years After Sir Ahmadu Bello”.’
He recalled the circumstances that led to the death of the premier and subsequent events which culminated in the Nigerian civil war, stressing that “it is better to talk through our differences and build a stronger nation together”.
“The event of Jan 15, 1966 was a monumental tragedy which set in motion other tragedies that severely buckled our country. I lived through this as a young officer, my generation can testify that it is better to talk through our differences than come to blows,” the president said.
“The opportunisms and the narrow-minded magnification and mobilisation of every imaginable difference for political gain ruined the promise and optimism of the early post-independence years. These are the sort of behaviour that we should all reject.”
The President described the late premier as an honest, responsible person who dedicated his life to the service of humanity. “The lesson is that when you lead with honesty and integrity in the service of humanity, the society never forgets you even if you leave no wealth behind.”
Buhari urged Nigerians to unite in harnessing the talents of the diverse people of the country “to push our country to all the heights it can attain”.