Afenifere, Southern-east Leaders has come Down hard on President Muhammadu Buhari over a directive to the World Bank to concentrate on the Northern region, saying such directive was discriminatory.
Southern leaders, Afenifere, the forum said the directive, which was revealed by President of the World Bank Group, Jim Yong Kim, is sectional and divisive. In a statement by Messrs Guy Ikokwu (South-East), Bassey Henshaw (South-South) and Yinka Odumakin (South-West), the forum faulted the Presidency’s response to the matter, noting: “The Presidency should be more nuanced, speak the language of persuasion and not behave as if it is at war with Nigerians.
” The forum, however, said the disclosure by the World Bank chief had raised the need to restructure Nigeria. It said:“This gaffe has again raised the urgent need for the restructuring of Nigeria so that the constituent units of Nigeria do not have to struggle to control or pray for the mind of whoever is at the center before they can witness development.
“This directive without mincing words is sectional, discriminatory, divisive and against the laudable promise of Mr. President at his inauguration that he would not be beholden to anyone as he was elected to be the President of everybody. “It riles the more when we have a situation of provocative deployment of “Operation Python Dance” and “Crocodile Smile” to a section of the country while the World Bank is being dispatched to another.
“Giving instructions to the World Bank to concentrate on a section of the country where the President hails from throws a knife at the heart of our nationhood and challenges the hackneyed expression that the ‘unity of Nigeria is settled’. “There can never be any rational explanation for why such a request should be made by a President with a pan-Nigerian mandate.