President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday reiterated the imperativeness for national integration for a sustained growth and development of the nation when he stressed that every well meaning Nigerian must ensure unity that will guarantee the achievement of national integration.
He urged Nigerians to make use of the 1999 constitution to fight for their rights, instead of towing the line of illegality to agitate for their rights.
President Buhari spoke as special guest of honour at the memorial conference in honour of former military Governor of Northern region, late General Hassan Usman Katsina.
“We must unite as a nation for national integration, emulate virtues of late General Hassan Usman Katsina”.
He stressed further that the constitution contains all necessary portions from page one to the end that guarantee the rights the people should enjoy.
Buhari who was represented by the minister of interior, Lieutenant General Abdulraman Danbamzau (rtd) added that Nigerians, particularly Northerners, should emulate the virtues of General Katsina.
But former Vice President and Turakin Adamawa, Atiku Abubakar agreed that as a country, we have not done enough to live up to this ideal.
Atiku said “we have obviously not done enough to realise national integration and the survival of democracy.
“Sometimes we implement contradictory policies that weaken national integration. An example is the requirement of state and local government of origin rather than residency for access to government services and jobs. That alone restricts people mobility and infuses in them a sense of rejection by the very country that wants them to feel welcome and proud.”
Atiku who Presented a paper titled; Restructuring Nigeria for greater national integration and democratic stability at the memorial conference further posited that “since the various amalgamations that created the entity that we now call Nigeria, different segments of Nigeria’s population have, at different times and sometimes at the same time, expressed feelings of marginalisation, of being short-changed, dominated, oppressed, threatened or even targeted for elimination.”