The federal government on Monday issued a stern warning to secession agitators, saying such a call was unacceptable.
Speaking when he received a delegation from the National Institute of Public Relation (NIPR) in Abuja, the minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said while it’s okay and right for people to express their views and show their concerns on burning national issues in the country and even suggest restructuring, it was not acceptable to call for secession.
He also decried the rising rate of fake news and careless statements by some Nigerians.
The Minister said the latest incident of fake news was a situation where about 600 people were sent letters that they were enlisted to the Nigerian Army.
He said the same purveyors of fake news and fraudsters “collected N10,000 from each of the applicants and tell them to report to the Army battalion at Okitipupa, and at the same time alerted the Commandant that Boko Haram members are coming to invade the barracks same day.’’
He said fake news has taken a new dimension, decrying the rising spate of inflammatory statements on social media.
He also noted that without security, there can be no development in the nation.
The minister said that is why the current administration was committed to ensuring peace and security in the country.
Alhaji Mohammed recalled that the consensus of the Town Hall Meeting in Kaduna was simple, saying ‘’it is okay and right for people to express their view and show their concern on burning national issues and even suggest restructuring but what is not acceptable is the call for secession.
‘’When you go to social media today you will see all sorts of inflammatory statements being made daily you will begin to appreciate that it is not just politicians that should be blamed for the nation’s predicament.
“Each of us has a role to play to tone down the rhetoric, that is why I am glad NIPR is lending its platform to work with government to ensure that we have a country that is peaceful and secured because without security there can be no development and that is why this administration is ensuring peace and security.’’
Speaking earlier, NIPR president, Muktar Sirajo, said the NIPR as a relation-building institute was worried by the rising rate of the deplorable security situation in the country and the politicisation of insecurity by politicians in the country.
‘’The rate of insecurity in the country goes beyond blaming the president, blaming the government as the situation requires everyone to come together to look for a solution.
‘’The NIPR is ready to provide the platform to solve this menace. We are offering ourselves, expertise in public relations and relationship building and mending to solve this problem,” he added.
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