My generation is committed to keeping the country united – IBB
General Ibrahim Babangida (Rtd)
As the country marks the official 50th anniversary of the Nigerian Civil War which ended in January 1970, former Military President of Nigeria, General Ibrahim Babangida (Rtd) has stated that the era of coup d’état has fast left Nigeria, insisting that only a stupid soldier can think of such a move.
He explained that a lot has been done to get the ideology out of their heads because it is no longer acceptable globally and regionally.
General Babangida who spoke on Channels Television Newsnight programme indicated that his generation will use everything possible to make sure that the country remains united.
IBB who recounted the ordeals of the war added, “I can tell you no that only a stupid soldier will think of a coup d’état because this is outside their head, it is no longer in their psyche, it is no longer acceptable in Africa and in the world generally, so he is intelligent enough to know that if he stages a coup, the country will be ostracised in the world community of nations, there can be an uprising in your own country, so it’s no longer fashionable.”
He stressed that his generation saw the unity of the country as an article of faith amongst them and they don’t plan to see the country go through another civil war.
“Nobody will like to see this country disintegrated because we will be unfair to those who put their lives on the line and died for the purpose of keeping the country one. If we let it go, we will not be fair to them, thousands of people were killed, a lot were maimed, and some were permanently disabled.”
The former military president noted that for the country to move forward, the selection of leaders is very critical
He stressed that for a leader to be picked; a lot needs to be considered, including his thought pattern towards keeping the country united.
“The whole thing depends on the leadership selection; one of the things I would have loved to see is if you want to pick a leader, you should be able to access his thought about the country, the unity, he will not jeopardize it, try to use everything within his powers legitimately to make sure that the country remains one”.
“Our selection of leadership is the most important thing; political, military and economic leadership. Once this is strong, and everybody in this sector believes in this country, I think we won’t have a problem.”
The retired Army General said that his generation and the next, have held on to the unity of the country and that is what makes them qualified to move the country towards the required objective.
“My generation is committed and they will use everything possible; apply logic, advice, talks just to make sure that the country remains united”.
“You cannot convince me that this country should break; I wouldn’t talk to you for a long time because I know people died trying to keep the country one, so my generation will insist this country remains one”.
“There are 200 million people in this country and there are some people in my generation and the one after mine, who will always believe in this country and those generations, will move this country towards the required objective.”