The Director General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Mr. Mike Omeri has called on all Nigerians to resist what he called “the attempts by a few persons to drag the nation into another unnecessary civil war”.
Mr. Omeri made this call while delivering a paper titled “Nigeria’s Centennial Celebrations – Constructing Social Bridges, Concretizing Relationships and Building National Reputation” at the induction ceremony of the Nigerian Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) in Lagos on Tuesday.
The NOA Director General observed that the elites and middle class in Nigeria have relationships and strong bonds that transcend tribes and religion while the critical mass of ordinary Nigerians from different parts of the country live in suspicion of one another. He also noted that through the interfaith dialogue sessions organized by the NOA across the country, it had been found that “Nigerians of different religious persuasions are desirous of living in peace with one another”. He therefore wondered “who is promoting these intertribal and interreligious suspicions? Who stands to benefit from a Nigeria that is divided along tribal and religious lines” and charged Nigerians to expose, rather than cooperate with such elements of disunity.
Mr. Omeri who is also a fellow of the NIPR encouraged traditional rulers from across the nation to embark on regular exchange of visits as a way of promoting good intertribal relationships among the different peoples of Nigeria. He further urged Nigerians to imbibe the attitude of doing the right things always in order to build a good national reputation. In his words, “It is the aggregate of our actions as individuals in private sector, religious sectors and government sector that will determine the kind of national reputation that we project”.
The NOA DG called on the media to re-asses its role in development by stressing those things that bind the nation together and looking at the present spate of insecurity as a period that requires special handling.
He said that the depiction of the nation as if it is in a war can harm the image and vital interest of the country among the comity of nations.