The meeting of the Presidential Advisory Committee on National dialogue with stakeholders in the South-South today ended in confusion, following an outburst from participants against a remark made by Governor Adams Oshiomhole.
The Governor who took the stage to make his contribution shortly after the Isoko Ethnic group had made their contribution said he objected to spending huge public funds on a wasteful venture saying, during the tenure of President Olusegun Obasanjo, money was spent on similar conference and at the end, nothing came out of that conference
“I will be surprised if anything changes. Sincerely, I have no business to deceive or mislead anyone. I believe that the outcome of this conference will not be different from that of other conferences we have had in the past.”
But as soon as Governor Oshiomhole made this statement, committee member, Col Nyiam jumped on his feet and would perhaps have lunged at the Governor were he close to him. He was restrained by other members who were taken aback by his action. Even while the Governor was still making his contribution, Nyiam started screaming at the top of his voice for the Governor to shut up and sit down.
He was then joined in by the PDP thugs who disrupted the whole proceedings and many scampered for safety as a result of the unruliness of the committee member and thugs. The Governor who insisted on concluding his remarks however yielded the floor when the thugs were getting violent. However, the Governor had, at a courtesy visit to him in his office by members of the Committee led by Senator Femi Okurounmu, said he had no faith in the whole process. Oshiomhole said “all I owe Nigeria now is to speak my mind. It could be error of my head but certainly not of my heart.
As much as I wish you well, I just want to say that I have no faith in this process and I do not think it was necessary at all”. The Governor said “I am unable to find any basis to give me some illusion that this exercise will not be different from the others. And I honestly think that in terms of the private sector, when a country keeps debating how we can live together that cannot be one of the basis on which the outside community will invest in Nigeria.
They may well wait until we know how we want to live in Nigeria”. He lamented that fifty-three years after independence, Nigerians still prefer to look at themselves from their ethnic origin rather than being Nigerians, saying, “for me, I am just a Nigerian”.
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