Northern Governors Forum Leader, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, has said that neither the Indigenous People of Biafra nor other separatist agitators can divide Nigeria.
Shettima, who is the governor of Borno State, said this on Monday in Kaduna at a summit organised by the Northern Elders Forum.
Shettima said it was foolhardy for anyone to believe that the country could be divided.
He said, “There is no ethnic nationality that has a greater stake in the continued existence of this country than the Igbo. But unfortunately those that have lost out in the chess of power politics will continue to form mischief.
“It is foolhardy for anybody to have the illusion that we can divide this nation; that we have an Igbo nation, a separate Ijaw nation or a separate Tiv nation or Kanuri nation.
“Believe me, the level of inter-ethnic relationship is so thick that it becomes difficult for anybody to divide this country into two, three or four pieces.
“It is level of our tolerance, our level of understanding and our level of accommodation that can really move this nation or any nation forward.”
The governor took a swipe at the Goodluck Jonathan administration, describing it as the greatest tragedy to have befallen the nation for quite sometimes, especially in the last eight years.
He said it was “an administration that made every single effort to divide this country along religious and ethnic lines”, adding that “deliberate effort was made especially in the North, to divide the people.”
He called on other northern leaders to work towards tackling the challenges in the region; the biggest which he said was poverty.
At the forum, which was attended by northern governors, senators, captains of industries, and retired senior military officers among others.