Mr President, you are right about the unity of Nigeria but…Chidi Mokeme

Chidi Mokeme

President Mohammadu Buhari’s nationwide broadcast on Monday has caught the attention of Nollywood actor and reality show host, Chidi Mokeme.

In a swift reaction, the 45-year-old actor has in an open letter to the President expressed his concerns over the dictatorial tone with which the address was delivered to Nigerians.

He also faulted President Buhari’s comments that Nigeria’s unity was not negotiable, saying that under the present realities, Nigerians must discuss how they want to live.

Mokeme’s letter to Buhari reads, “MR PRESIDENT, YOU ARE RIGHT ABOUT THE UNITY OF NIGERIA BUT……. My major concern about Mr President’s speech is the dictatorial tone applied, negating your fatherly factor and the concerns of dissenting voices in a democracy, especially as it relates to the restructuring of Nigeria.

“These dissenting voices in my estimation does not include IPOB. Mr President I agree with you that it is good to keep Nigeria united. But to say that the type of unity we currently have is nonnegotiable smacks of dictatorship.

“In case you have forgotten the so called unity was actually discussed by our fathers and the terms of unity Nigerians wanted was agreed upon. But the military boys came in with violent disorder and destroyed what was negotiated prior to independence and in 1963, and gave us what you now describe as nonnegotiable, called 1999 constitution.

“What the military led by one man gave us is unanimity and not unity. They took away the content of what was negotiated that was supposed to be nonnegotiable and gave us inequality, stifled systems that undermine Nigeria’s progress, development and prosperity. Indeed our fathers had a detailed discussion and negotiation with the British in the 50’s about the kind of union that was acceptable us.

“They all agreed on real federalism whereby each zone maintained its own economy, peculiar political structure and institutions. These included resource control, regional/state police and prisons and many other creative structures that made Nigeria progressive pre-independence to 1967.

“Any document decided by Adulsalam Abubakar and his junta called the 199 constitution is without our general contribution ant it is largely not acceptable. And the change required cannot be made by only a council of state populated by retired generals from one region or national assembly without equal representation from across the states and zones.

“There maybe need for input from other well meaning Nigerians if we are serious about carrying zone along. A unity based on inequality and military imposition must be negotiable.”


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