Mallam Garba Shehu, Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammdu Buhari on Media and Publicity, has decried the rate at which social media promotes tribalism in Nigeria.
The Presidential aide therefore called for caution on the part of the users while speaking at the Positive Voices Campaign Project showcase event in Abuja on Thursday.
Shehu who lamented the negative impact of violence caused by tribalism and hate speech in places like Rwanda, noted that Nigeria had dealt with the problem of tribalism in the 1960s but it is unfortunate that the social media is bringing back this dangerous trend.
Shehu also noted that as a government which has been an advocate of peace, it is important that Nigeria remains peaceful, stating that every Nigerian is free to live in any part of the country and cannot be threaten by any violence.
Speaking further, Shehu pointed out that “President Muhammadu Buhari has promised to bring back permanent peace all over the country including Niger Delta, North-East and central part of the country.
“As a matter of fact during the All Progressives Congress (APC) campaign, he promised that Nigerians will be free to reside in any part of the country and earn legitimate livelihood without hindrance.
“You can see that the reason for some of the programmes of government like social investments scheme is that Nigerians should be free to reside and work in any part of the country.
“Tribalism is a problem that has been with the government for a long time, it will take time to erase that,” he said.
He urged Nigerians to see themselves as one to enable them earn their livelihood without any hindrance.
Shehu also said that it would be a bit difficult to transit to the system that would be beneficial and meant to restructure the economy to produce for exports, noting that although Nigeria had been a consumer nation, the country was currently changing positively by engaging in the exportation of yams.
Shehu, who urged Nigerians to key into government’s initiative of exporting farm produce, added that no country would survive if it is import-dependent and also gave an assurance that Nigeria would start exporting rice before the end of 2019.