The Minister of Interior, Mr. Rauf Aregbesola, has implored Nigerians to exercise restraint and embraced dialogue, good neighbourliness and the primacy of peace-building as ways of dousing anger and resentment over the worsening insecurity in the country.
In a statement titled, “A Time to Put Unity and Peace Above All,” the minister described the incidences of heightening ethnic and religious tensions in the country as part of outcomes of political and economic strains that have persistently defined the country and continue to exacerbate security challenges, making the task of development more traumatic.
“Government is keenly aware and genuinely concerned about these complications that sadly, have been sharpened by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic through the growth of anxieties about issues, life and livelihood in our communities,” he said.
He added that the federal government is taking a holistic look at the challenges to ensure the return of lasting peace, security and amity to all our communities.
Aregbesola, however, warned that the federal government will not tolerate any act or behaviour capable of jeopardising law and order as well as security of lives and property.
“Therefore, as the government is fashioning long term answers to address these problems, it urges citizens to appreciate that self-help and lawlessness cannot offer a path to sustainable solution. It can only lead to greater pain as well as costly human and material losses and disruption of the already difficult task of devising responses that will produce tangible peace and development in the country,” he stated.
Aregbesola assured Nigerians that the federal government will facilitate dialogue among states, community, security, traditional institutions, religious organisations and youth groups to resolve the problems within constitutional and legal frameworks.
He, therefore, called on the people to continue to work together towards building a peaceful community that will be beneficial to all, irrespective of ethnicity, religion and other differences.