By Sunday Oguntuyi, Osogbo
Nigeria’s Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has said that it would take 50 years for Nigeria to recover from another civil war.
Aregbesola warned Nigerians to desist from from any act capable of threatening Nigeria’s unity, describing those calling for the separation of the country as ignorant.
The Minister stated this on Saturday in Ilesa during his 64th birthday celebration and presentation of a book titled “The Rauf I Know,” written by a journalist, Mr Dayo Olanipekun.
Mr Olanipekun covered him as state house correspondent for the Broadcasting Corporation of Osun State (OSBC) during his two terms as governor.
Ogbeni Aregbesola said: “Those calling for Nigeria’s break-up are ignorant. Every Nigerian should work for Nigeria’s unity and development.
“It will take Nigeria 50 years to recover from civil war. Whoever likes women and children should not support, but rather condemn any call of separation and conduct capable of threatening Nigeria’s unity.
“Nigeria is a country created by God for us and for the black race.
“I am not saying everything that is happening in Nigeria is good. We should treat the problems and challenges facing Nigerians, not calling for her break-up. Decapitation is not the antidote for headache.”
Aregbesola also declared support for a new caucus of the All Progressives Congress (APC), The Osun Progressives (TOP), saying that he is in support of any move to consolidate progressives legacies in the State of Osun, strengthen the party from the polling units, wards and local government levels and strengthen internal democracy in the party, which are clearly stated in the objectives and mission of TOP.
Speaking at the event, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola stated that Osun as a state is proud of Aregbesola, noting that the former governor of the state performed very well while ruling the state and still performing as the Minister Of Interior.
Oyetola who was represented at the event the Commissioner for Political Affairs and Inter-governmental Relations, Mr Taiwo Akeju, said: “You performed very well in the State of Osun and you are performing well as the minister of Interior. We are very proud of you.”
In his address, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, Ojaja II, said that Aregbesola’s legacy in the development of the State will forever linger in the sands of time.
The Ooni of Ife who spoke via Zoom noted that the State of Osun and its people cannot forget Aregbesola as his achievements are beyond what anyone can rubbish.
“We will forever remember him. Your work will never cease to reflect in the sands of time. It is during his tenure that landmark achievements occurred in Osun which we cannot forget,” he said.
“We can never forget you. Your achievements are beyond what anyone can rubbish. We are proud of you and what you represent.”
The Registrar of the Joint Admission Matriculation Board (JAMB), Prof Ishaq Oloyede, who delivered a lecture titled “Power is responsibility” at the event, urged Nigerian political leaders to be responsible with power.
Oloyede who was represented by Dr Wahab Oyedokun, tasked politicians to operate with ideology that address people’s yearnings.
Speaking at the event, Chief Mrs Tokunbo-Awolowo Dosumu, daughter of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, said Aregbesola is among the few Nigerian politicians that identify with and promote Awolowo’s legacy.
According to Dosumu, Aregbesola has always been committed to all the activities of Awolowo Foundation, describing him as an exemplary leader.
Politicians, traditional rulers, trade union groups and people from all walks of life from the state and across the country graced the occasion, while others spoke via zoom.