By Harry Awurumibe, Editor, Abuja Bureau
With the spate of banditry, arson, killing, kidnapping and general insecurity across the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria assuming dangerous dimensions, the Senate Whip and Senator representing Abia North in the Upper Chambers of the National Assembly, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to call a National Dialogue to discuss ways to arrest the prevailing situation.
Kalu who was a guest of Channels Television current affairs programme ‘Sunday Politics’ is also canvassing for a Nigerian President of South East extraction in 2023, saying that the country will be better for it.
The two-time Governor of Abia state who was visibly worried over the degeneration of security situation in the country, which he admitted has reached an alarming level opined that something must be done to stem the tide and quickly too.
Kalu said it is sad that no part of the country is spared of wanton destructions especially the recent attacks on the resident of Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma and Police formations in the South East geopolitical zone.
According to him: “Nigeria is at war with itself. There is no part of the country that has not been attacked with its attendant loss of lives and properties. We cannot continue like this. It has to stop before our country is destroyed. These type of things happened when I was a Governor and I handled it.
“When they were kidnapping white men in the Niger Delta, the then President called me and other Governors and I said when they are done kidnapping white men they will turn to our our citizens. Fortunately, we dealt with it. We can do it again. A national dialogue is needed without further delay”, he said.
Asked to throw more light on who is to call for the national dialogue, Kalu pointedly laid it on the door steps of the Presidency, saying: “Of course, it is not the National Assembly that will call for national discussion. It is the President of Federal Republic of Nigeria (Muhammadu Buhari). I suggest now is the time for Mr. President to call for National Dialogue without further delay to save our country”.
Kalu insisted that: “a national discussion is needed at this time, such that it will enable a regional discussion, a forum for each region to come to air their views on ways to end banditry, killing and insurgency in Nigeria”.
The lawmaker who is a well known entrepreneur, politician, business tycoon and Chairman of SLOK Holding as well as the Daily Sun and New Telegraph Newspapers in Nigeria and Ghana, argued that Nigeria must be saved because he and other citizens do not want to country destroyed.
Meanwhile, Kalu who served as the Governor of Abia State, Nigeria from May 29, 1999 to May 29, 2007, has said he is throwing his weight behind a Nigerian President of South East extraction in 2023.
Asked if he has Presidential ambition in 2023 Presidential election as some “visioners” have predicted for him, Kalu replied: “I am a Catholic, I don’t believe in the said “visioners” or “prophets”. I support a Nigerian President of South East extraction in 2023.
“It must not be me but if I am asked to lead, I am mentally and physically fit to lead Nigeria and I will unite the country. I am an investor, I have massive investments in the 36 states of Nigeria hence I want the country to be at peace. We don’t have any other country to call our own. We must rise to stop the killings. We must dialogue”, Kalu concluded.