An senior statesman, Alhaji Bashir Othman Tofa, has cautioned the federal government not to disregard the Biafra Customary Government (BCG) proclaimed by Alhaji Asari Dokubo, the leader of the Niger Delta Peoples Salvation Force (NDPSF).
Alhaji Dokubo, who had announced himself as the leader of BCG had also said provincial structures would be set up for the government; but the FG, through the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, had reacted to the proclamation by describing it as a ‘theatre of the absurd by a joker seeking attention.’”Reacting to this development, Alhaji Tofa, in an exclusive interview with Daily Trust on Sunday, said, “Alhaji Asari Dokubo may be considered as a joker by the unwise. What if his utterance is only an early stage in a larger plan? Threats to this country should not be taken as a joke.”
He said he wondered if the FG would have maintained such a position if it had been someone from the North who said a fraction of what Dokubo said.
The National Republican Convention (NRC) candidate in Nigeria’s June 12, 1993, presidential election, the result of which was annulled, also commented on the clamour for zoning for the 2023 presidential election, opining that zoning was detrimental to the unity of the country.
Tofa said, “It is the sign of backwardness to continue propagating a divisive presidency, rather than the one that will serve all Nigerians equally and justly,” adding that the blame for this backwardness was on the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He said, “The PDP started this foolish idea. They have damaged the political climate of this country while thinking it was for the best. Now it has become what may destroy this country if care is not taken.”
He also said there was nothing wrong with the idea of the presidential candidate and vice presidential candidate of a party to be from the same religion as was the case in 1993 when Chief MKO Abiola and Baba Gana Kingibe (Muslims) ran on the ticket of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
Tofa, however, said, as lofty as that was, Nigeria “is now too polarised for the Muslim-Muslim or Christian-Christian ticket to be dared by any party.”