30th September, 2011
Ogun state governor, Sen. Ibikunle Amosun has declared thatÂ in spite of the perceived gloomy state of the nation 51 years afterÂ independence, there is still tremendous hope for transformation.
He urged the Federal Government to dialogue with the deadly IslamicÂ sect, Boko Haram, saying that the group might have genuine grievancesÂ for causing crises in some parts of the country.
Amosun made this assertion while speaking with newsmen after observingÂ today’s Special Jumat prayer to mark the 51st independence anniversaryÂ of the country at the Central Mosque, Kobiti, Abeokuta, the OgunÂ state, capital, southwest Nigeria.
The governor observed that such hopes would come with dialogue, whichÂ would solve the myriads of socio-economic problems plaguing theÂ country.
Amosun, while responding to question from our correspondent on if Â there is any hope for Nigeria at 51, said â€œyes, we have tremendous hope. The only thing is that we need to dialogue inÂ order to allow peace reign. Even if there are some things we fail toÂ talk about, we should be able to at least sit down and dialogue.
â€œBut, I think there are great things about Nigeria, 51 years are enough to begin to take the right step in transforming the country. For the country to great, Nigeria must be united and avoid what canÂ cause disharmony.â€
Earlier in his address, the governor said that the country neededÂ prayers to develop, asserting that, â€œNigeria has enough to develop atÂ 51. I want to urge the Federal Government to placate BokoÂ Haram through dialogue as they may have genuine reasons for theirÂ actions.
“I believe dialogue is the only solution to the Boko HaramÂ problem.â€
Meanwhile, the Speaker of the Ogun State House of Assembly, Rt.Â Hon.(Prince) Surajudeen Ishola Adekunbi has enjoined Nigerians toÂ forge a united front in tackling the various challenges confrontingÂ the nation and threatening its corporate existence.
In his message to commemorate the independence anniversary, AdekunbiÂ assured that the nation would overcome its present travails, emergeÂ stronger and remain a more united and indivisible entity.
By Abiodun Onafuye/Abeokuta