• Monday, February 26, 2024
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BusinessDay

UK, France, others back action against Boko Haram

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World leaders, including Queen Elizabeth II of Great Britain, French President Francois Hollande, British Foreign Office Minister for Africa Mark Simmonds and Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, on Thursday hinged Africa’s economic prosperity on a strong and united Nigeria.

The world leaders most of who spoke at Nigeria’s Centenary celebration, in Abuja, while condemning the activities of the Boko Haram sect for its persistent attacks in Nigeria, promised to collaborate with Nigeria in getting the nation out of the current insecurity.

European Union Commission President Jose Barroso who expressed EU condolences and solidarity with Nigeria after the horrendous terrorist attacks in the North of the country, announced a programme of 15 million Euro aimed at reinforcing the security capabilities of the Nigerian police force.

Gambian President, Yahya Jammeh, speaking on security challenges in Nigeria, called for genuine reconciliation in Nigeria, adding that African countries look forward to a peaceful, strong and united Nigeria that will serve as power house for black Africa.

“There is no country in the world that is comprised of one region, one religion and one ethnic group. The beauty of Nigeria and any country for that matter lies in her cultural, religious and regional diversity. Our diversity should be a source of strength, unity and pride and not division, weakness and violence.

“If religion is anything to go by, we as Muslims and Christians should understand that in the ultimate kingdom of Allah that is heaven only the Almighty Allah would decide who enters heaven.

“Since our ultimate objective as Allah worshiping Muslims and Christians is to be granted eternal bliss in heaven, we must remember that we have no control over who we want to live with in heaven. Therefore, we must accept that in this world, we should tolerate each other, accept our diversity, since it is the same Almighty who created all of us despite our diversity.

“The people of the Gambia, and black Africa in general look up to all Nigerians to maintain and strengthen the unity, peace and prosperity of Nigeria as Africa’s most populous nation and black Africa’s power house. All Nigerians should understand that a divided Nigeria can only mean catastrophe for the entire black race. Please preserve the unity and peace of Nigeria and remember that Nigeria is bigger than any regional, ethnic or cultural considerations or interests”, he said.

Simmonds while recalling the 1914 amalgamation of the Northern and Southern Protectorates and Lagos, said although the amalgamation “brought together peoples, territories and resources that had never before considered themselves as having mutual interests. That brought challenges- and perhaps still does”.

Tony Ailemen