Saturday, June 10, 2017 9:14 am
Elder Paul Unongo, the Deputy Leader of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) on Friday disassociated the Forum from the ultimatum issued by some Arewa youth groups that people of Southeastern region in the Northern region should leave on or before October 1.
Unongo who spoke to contradict another leading member of the Forum, Professor Ango Abdullahi on the issue said NEF could not have been in support the youths who were ignorant of the fact that Nigeria lost three million people to a civil war fought for keep the country as one nation.
Unogo said, “I am the Deputy Leader of the Northern Elders Forum and Ambassador Yusuf Maitama Sule is the leader. So, only the two of us can speak for the forum on sensitive matter like this. Therefore, if Professor Ango Abdullahi is backing those ignorant youths, then he is speaking for himself.
“We cannot support the nonsense those boys said. We fought civil war with our blood to keep Nigeria one. So, any Nigerian can live in any part of the country he feels like. Igbos are welcome in the North, they are welcome in Yoruba land and my own village in Tiv land and they have right to pursue their daily bread and own property.
“We couldn’t have killed three million people to keep Nigeria one and come back and allow these kids (the Northern Youth Groups) to insult our intelligence. We knew why we fought the war, we knew why we killed the people we loved.
“We knew why we made the sacrifice of three million men dead. So, Northern Elders Forum cannot take same position as those young men, if at all they took a position.
“So, if the young men cannot build a nation, they should not destroy the one we put our lives on the line to build for them. We cannot allow young men who did not fight the civil war with us to destroy our country, because Nigeria cannot afford another civil war.”