‘Promoting Ethnic, Religious, Regional Sentiments, Cause of Tension in Last Elections’

Sylvester Idowu in Warri

A Niger Delta peace advocate, Chief Sheriff Mulade, has traced the unhealthy tension across the country to those promoting religious, ethnic and regional sentiments in the last general election.

He said their actions ran contrary to majority of Nigerians collective resolve to build a united and peaceful country.

Mulade, who is the national coordinator of Niger Delta-based Centre for  Peace and Environmental Justice (CEPEJ), made the disclosure during a week-long peace advocacy visit to some northern states.

Reiterating that peace is very important in the present day Nigerian situation in a statement issued yesterday, the Rights Activist maintained that there is an urgent need for unity and reconciliation through promotion of peace, equity and justice at all times.

“It is imperative to state that the unity of Nigeria has continued to be threatened by bad elements who whipped up religious, ethnic and regional sentiments during political campaigns.“

“This situation runs counter to our collective resolve to be a united and peaceful country,” he emphasised.

Mulade asserted that it was to achieve this objective that he conceived and birthed a project ‘Nigeria For Peace’, an intervention initiative with like mind civil society officials and patriotic individuals across the country to promote peace in Nigeria.

According to him, “We met some non-state actors and patriotic Nigerians, who had been working on national unity and peace, to come together and champion the project through concerted efforts to compliment other initiatives to restore and sustain national unity, cohesion, and peaceful coexistence with sustainable national development as their goal.”

Also, the Chairman of Kano State Christian Association of Nigerian (CAN), Bishop John Namaza Niyiring, who received Chief Mulade and co-convener of the Nigeria for Peace, Alhaji Ibrahim Waiya, commended them for the initiative.

On his part, Maj. Gen. Zamini Sarham (rtd) expressed appreciation to the group, and lauded them for the move, calling on Nigerians to support the peace project for the sake of unity and well-being of Nigeria.

Addressing the delegation at his palace, His Royal Highness, Dr. Faruk Umar Faruk, the Emir of Daura, Katsina State, commended the group for embarking on such a huge project to save Nigeria.

He said: “We cannot pretend to be safe because our country has been faced with many serious challenges ranging from insurgency, banditry, kidnapping to political thuggery and religious intolerance, all of which have helped to further deteriorate the unity of Nigeria. I want to assure you that I am fully in support of the project, and I will be committed to undertake any responsibility for a peaceful and united Nigeria.”

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