Gowon condemns secessionists, urges them to learn from history

Gowon made the remark on Tuesday, May 10, 2016, during the presentation of a book published in honour of Nigeria’s first president, late Nnamdi Azikiwe.

Gowon made the remark on Tuesday, May 10, 2016, during the presentation of a book published in honour of Nigeria’s first president, late Nnamdi Azikiwe.

“I think the point that he is making here is seen as the recent hype of the pro-Biafran spirit. I remember visiting the East Central State at the time, from Enugu, Nsukka, Owerri, Umuahia, Abakaliki and then to Onitsha and being met by children at that time who welcomed us so sincerely and they addressed me to say you are our leaders, we pray that no Nigerian child should one day suffer what they went through during that civil war,” he said according to Vanguard.

“Such call should make any Nigerian leader to provide for their children and make them loyal to their country. That touched me so dearly to think of the suffering that these children went through. What can I say to them? I am sorry for the things that they went through. It is not by design that these things happened and so, I want to assure you that we will do our best for the future.

“Unfortunately, it seems as if we Nigerians never learned from history. How many children suffer today throughout the country? Honestly, something has to be done by Nigerians and I think that is one of the reasons this call by these young people trying to say they want to fight again should be discouraged.

“Do they realize what it takes? If I have anything to do with Nigeria, as I have said, I will implore all of you to really bring peace to bear by correcting the young people if they are going astray. At this time, therefore, I think the youths seem to have forgotten our chequered history and labour of our heroes past.

“I can assure you that anything that has to do with Zik, is something that all of us must join hands and celebrate. Celebrating involves his life-time and his service to Nigeria," he added.

President Muhammadu Buhari had earlier also condemned the fresh Biafra agitation while vowing to keep Nigeria united.

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