The Catholic Arch Bishop Emeritus of Abuja, John Cardinal Onayekan, has asserted that unless deliberate and decisive steps are taken to address pressing issues of insecurity in Nigeria, the country might move from being a failed state to a collapsed State.
The religious leader stated this as a guest on AIT early morning Programme, Kakaaki, monitored in Abuja.
John Cardinal Onayekan gave a time limit between April 2022 and April 2023 within which some remedy must be applied if not, then the country should not think about next general elections.
The clergyman asserted that it is time the government admitted that it has not done well as denying that would be a terrible thing to do.
He pleaded with the political class to set aside political differences to tackle the nation’s problems with a united front.
“The country is in a state of emergency which requires the political class to adopt a concerted action to wrest it from collapse.”
According to him, “May I state that if we were to start talking about the state of the nation we have a whole catalogue of complaints and frustrations but what is worrying to me is that we have one crucial year between now and April 2023 and can we do something.
He is equally of the opinion that “My fear is that if we do not do something serious and just allow things to continue to go we may end up from failed state to a collapsed state and if our state collapses you can forget all about elections.
“And I am praying and begging the Nigerian political community that this is the time to put aside the concept of political parties because we are in a state of emergency.
According to him “It is time for everyone to hold the best which we have to stop political manipulations to stop defending the politically indefensible.
He is also of the opinion that “It is time for the government to admit that it has not done well as one of the newspapers said if the government continues to be in denial,saying things are good when things are obviously bad…it is terrible.”
The religious leader said further that he is not of the view that the Government can say with sincerity that it is in control.
He said it is important for the Government to admit the situation and request the help of people to help move the nation forward.
“I don’t think the Apc government of Buhari can sincerely say it is in control…
“The government doesn’t want to admit that it has lost control but the reality is that it is on the ground. We need to see if it is possible for the government to come out and be truthful and also request the help of the people to move Nigeria forward
“I am praying seriously that we do something to fix our nation to a reasonable state of normalcy in this one year.
According to him, “We should be able to tackle this insurgency, banditry; we should be able to do something about collapsed social services, ASUU strike going on indefinitely leaving our youths roaming throughout the entire country.”