Osinbajo challenges Nigerian elite on social cohesion, unity

Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo has called for strong consensus among the elite and a policy framework that would promote social cohesion and unity in Nigeria.

Osinbajo made the call on Monday at the maiden Policy Making and Good Governance Lecture Series organised by the National Institute for Policy Strategic Studies (NIPPS), Kuru, near Jos.

The vice president, in his lecture tagged: ”Creating a Homeland for All: A Nation Building in a Diverse Democracy”, decried the rising spate of frightening divisive tendencies, which according to him was responsible for the backwardness in the nation.

He maintained that the country’s diversity ought to be a ”blessing and not a curse”, adding that Nigeria had the potential to be a great nation but only when the cankerworm of division was collectively fought.

Osinbajo, who cited examples of Singapore, Tanzania and Rwanda, as nations that effectively managed their diversities, said that Nigeria could take a cue.

“Most heterogeneous nations have been able to manage and harness their diversities for the good of all and we can also do the same in Nigeria.

“Our diversity in Nigeria should not be a burden; in fact it is a blessing and so we must develop the capacity to manage this diversity for the growth of our nation.

“So, the elite must come together and agree to end the ethnic and religious profiling that we are currently facing in our dear nation; we must prioritise things that bind us together and de-prioritise ones that set us apart.

“I also believe that the political class and the nation’s leadership can do more in developing policies, laws and enforcing them toward addressing the weaponisation of ethnicity and religion in our dear nation,” he said.