Tunde Odesola.THE PUNCH .April 29, 2013
Governor Rauf Aregbesola of the Osun State has expressed fear that the nation is teetering on the brink.
Aregbesola said this on Friday in Osogbo at a dinner the government organised in honour of the President of the Nigerian Guild of Editors, Mr. Femi Adesina, and other executive members of the association.
The governor stated that unless the Federal Government urgently takes some concrete steps, the nation might collapse.
The basis for such palpable fear, Aregbesola said, hinged on the protracted unrest in virtually all the regions of the country.
According to him, anyone with the interest of the country at heart will certainly know that it (Nigeria) is at present closer to failure than success as a nation.
The governor said, “I am particularly worried about the fate of this nation today. Nigeria is very close to being a failed state than being successful.
“A nation can only remain indivisible and hold itself together when people charged with responsibilities refuse to shirk in the dispensation of such responsibilities.
“Crises manifest in different ways but the real causes of the nation’s abnormalities have not been addressed.
“It is not enough to tag the insurgency in the South as militancy or youth unrest and the one up North as religious crisis or Islamic fundamentalism, rather the utmost thing needed is solutions to all these unrests.”
Reacting to Adesina’s invitation to attend the guild’s conference coming up in Asaba, Delta State, Aregbesola said, “My only reservation about the invitation is safety. Nobody is safe in Nigeria.
“They kidnapped the Chairman of Local Council Area Authority, which is not even up to a council and they demanded $1m. How much would they demand if they kidnap a governor, $1bn? You might just stroll to stretch your legs and off you go – get kidnapped! Where would Osun get that kind of money?”
Explaining why Boko Haram sect killed people indiscriminately in the North-East region of the country, Aregbesola said the area had suffered great neglect, which consequently led to social dislocation.
He said, “The North-East had been so much neglected for several years. The region has the lowest power supply in the last 50 years. The region does not have power supply for up to 100 hours in a month.”
He urged the media, which is the source of information to the people, to practise developmental journalism.
He said through this brand of journalism, it would interest all stakeholders where the nation is going.