FORMER President Olusegun Obasanjo, Bishop of Diocese of Sokoto, Matthew Hassan Kukah, and Governor Nyesom Wike on Friday, appealed to the Ogoni people of Rivers State to embrace reconciliation and forgiveness over their struggle for emancipation.
The three eminent Nigerians were among dignitaries who converged on Port Harcourt for the presentation of ‘Witness to Reconciliation: My Personal Journey Towards Reconciliation in Ogoni,’ a book written by Bishop Kukah.
Speaking at the event, the Rivers State governor, Wike said, “It behoves us to know it is in the interest of Ogoni people to allow peace prevail in Ogoniland. There is nobody that will lose even chicken and will not be pained. We agree, but for how many years now, where are we?
“You know in every effort made to achieve peace, there is always one faction here that will come against this. You put in this other effort, these other people will come from this place and make sure there is no peace.
“Accusations and counter-accusations, blackmail and all kinds of things, at the end of the day, who is losing? We must tell ourselves the truth that we need peace in Ogoniland in order to move the Ogoni people forward.”
Obasanjo, who was the special guest of honour, said he was saddened that the situation in Ogoni had gone from bad to worse after the setting up of the Justice Oputa Panel.
Obasanjo harping on the imperative for genuine reconciliation among Ogonis said failure to attend to issues requiring urgent attention is the bane of most human conflicts as there is no human disagreement that cannot be resolved through dialogue.
Kukah, the book author, lauded Ogonis for the support accorded him while he facilitated the Ogoni peace process, just as he commended Governor Wike who launched his book with N50 million, aside from hosting the event.
Credit: The Nation