Mr Boss Mustapha, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), on Saturday reaffirmed his belief in the oneness of the country saying that the foundations of the country were too deep for a break-up.
He said this while addressing State House Correspondents after the wedding reception of his first daughter, Amanda, to Mr Otelemaba Westwood from South South, Nigeria.
According to him, his family is a trail blazer in inter-tribal marriages as he, from Adamawa in the North East married a Yoruba from Osun in the South West.
“Amanda was not the first to get into inter-tribal marriage from my family.
“I am a trail blazer, I went ahead of her, it is a marriage of unity.
“That is why whenever I hear people talking about Nigeria breaking up I just laugh.
“The foundations are deep, they are really deep,’’ he said.
Going further, the SGF said he came from a home with other siblings who all, except one, got married to people outside his tribe.
“I come from a home where I have other siblings, with the exception of one, my elder sister, nobody ever got married from my tribe.
“All of us got married, I have a brother in-law who is Igbo, a have a brother in-law who is Urhobo, I am married to a Yoruba.
“So basically our home has always been a small Nigeria and whenever we congregate there are Igbos, there are Urhobos, there are Yorubas, there are all manners of people.
“”We can claim to be true Nigerians,’’ the SGF boasted.
Mustapha said that his family was happy receiving a bridegroom from another tribe and “I feel very happy and very thrilled about it.’’
He noted that the bride and groom had received a lot of marriage induction and training during their pre-marriage classes but said that as a father, talking out of nearly 30-year marital experience, he would advise the couple to respect each other.
“”They should respect each other, think highly of each other, remain friends and as much as possible let them make God the centerpiece of their home.
“”If they have any doubt about things happening around them let them go back to the author of marriage himself, who is God who institutionalized marriage in the first place and ask what they should do in such a circumstance.
“”He (God) will always cut their path for them,’’ he said.
He advised the couple to remain together through thick and thin noting that the citizens live in very difficult times and “oftentimes people casualise marriage and they do not think highly of each other.’’
““My candid advice is that they should not take each other for granted as was stated earlier in the church.
““If they do the basic things of life, their marriage will be blissful.’’
Mustapha described his daughter as “a very tough girl, very intelligent and very hard working and quite independent adding “we will miss her definitely as she is the first born in the family.
“”We have had her, kept her, nurtured her all these years and she is part of us. But the joy is that we can pride ourselves for having brought her up and prepared her for her own home.
“”That is the thrill of a father and a parent to ensure that the generation continues to multiply.”
The Speaker of the House of Reps, Mr Yakubu Dogara, was the chairman of the reception while President Muhammadu Buhari, Senate President Bukola Saraki, APC Chieftain Sen. Bola Tinubu, some governors and ministers were among the dignitaries at the event.