Renowned Nobel laureate, Prof Wole Soyinka has warned the federal government not to disregard recent comment made by former President, Olusegun Obasanjo, regarding rising insecurity in the country.
Soyinka who was speaking at an event organised by the United Bank of Africa to mark the 2019 Africa Day, in Lagos, on Wednesday said the government must deal on the substance, not the person.
Obasanjo while delivering a lecture on Saturday in Delta state, had stated that the Boko Haram crisis had become a “West African Fulanization, African Islamisation” agenda.
However reacting to the comment by the ex-president, Lai Mohammed, minister of information, said such comment by the former president breeds division and disunity.
According to Soyinka, leaders must rather than over concentrate on the “marvellous concept of unity” must also deal with issues that threaten the existence of the nation and its people.
Soyinka said, “we are being re-colonized by a number of forces.”
“We should be careful not to be too dismissive over the matter. The Federal Government is leaving aside the substance, which is the high level of kidnapping, youth suicide, and terrorism in the country. I support unity in Africa but we need to particularize the area of unity we seek. Even Boko Haram also tries to unify everybody,” he said.
“Everybody knows me and Obasanjo, and I think we should be careful not to be too dismissive or abrasive. The language must be put aside and let us deal with the substance.
“Let us analyse carefully what the (former) president has said. I was listening to the Minister of Information; they are living aside the substance and dealing with the person. Obasanjo also called for a meeting to deal with the social malaise of suicide, kidnapping, noting that we had better sit down and tackle these issues.”