Acting President Yemi Osinbajo attended the 2017 Memorial Lecture for Nigeria’s assassinated leader, Murtala Ramat Muhammed in Abuja today, before departing for Rivers State to continue talks with Niger Delta citizens.
Muhammed was assassinated on 13 February 1976, in an aborted coup d’etat.
Former President Olusegun Obasanjo Muhammed’s widow, Ajoke and Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State were all at the lecture at Yar’Adua Centre in Abuja.
The lecture, entitled :“Managing the Boko Haram Crisis in Borno State; Experiences and lessons for a multi-party, multi-ethnic and multi-religious Nigeria.’ was delivered by Governor Shettima,
Aisha Oyebode, who runs the Murtala Muhammed Foundation, explained at the weekend why this year’s lecture focussed Boko Haram crisis.
“Nigeria is contending with tensions arising from the activities of micro-nationalistic agitators, threatening to compound existing security challenges occasioned by the Boko Haram insurgency that has caused fatalities in excesses of 14,000 people and displaced over 1 million people” said Mrs. Oyebode.
“More worrisome are the implications these issues have on an already fragile security environment in the region, characterised by unmitigated small arms proliferation, weak state and security institutions in the component countries and a large number of out of school children and unemployed youth with dire economic prospects who are vulnerable targets for radicalisation.
“This public lecture will also draw attention to the legacy created by the late General in office, in a period that is still described today as Nigeria’s finest period in international diplomacy.
“He was a foremost Pan-African who placed Africa at the centre of Nigeria’s foreign policy and mobilized support for the liberation of other African countries from apartheid, colonialism and neo-Colonialism.
“In Nigeria, his administration fought corruption and indiscipline, while pursuing peace and security within our borders – he was a firm believer in a peaceful and united Nigeria within an integrated and prosperous Africa.”