The United States of America has cheery news for Nigeria: the country is better together, amid calls by some secessionist groups.
Bearer of the unity message was United States of America Ambassador to Nigeria, Stuart Symington, who said Nigerians who preach unity will overcome those calling for secession.
Symington said this at an event to celebrate America’s 241st anniversary, in Abuja, yesterday.
The US envoy said his country and Nigeria share many similarities and, most notably, diversity.
Symington recounted how the first American President, George Washington, warned that those who seek to weaken a country would always seek to start by causing disunity.
He said, just like America, Nigeria will remain a united country because of its determined people and leaders.
“Every time we have been challenged, we overcame danger because we had visionary leaders committed to union and citizens committed to ensuring justice for all.
“Today, Nigeria is fortunate to have such leaders and citizens. Together, they are dedicated to keeping Nigeria united and just ensuring that every Nigerian is heard and taken into account and treated fairly.
“Together, those Nigerians will overpower any call to divide this nation. Thanks to them, thanks to you, the lamp of unity and justice burns brightly both in our nations tonight. And the sight of a united Nigeria’s light lifts Africa and with it, the world.”
The US envoy said Nigeria’s diversity is an inspiration to many countries. He said that, just like the US, Nigeria’s plurality is a source of strength.
“Wherever I meet a Nigerian, I ask ‘What do you like the most about your country?’ I like our diversity, our resilience, our energy, our warmth, our spirit, our food’ is the response.
“Just like the United States, Nigeria is a wonderfully diverse nation whose differences and diversity are sources of strength and reason for pride.”