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Banditry, oil theft more pressing than APC’s Muslim-Muslim ticket – Uzodinma

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The Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma, on Friday challenged Nigerians to find solutions to rising crude oil theft and insecurity in the country instead of focusing their attention on the All Progressives Congress (APC) Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket.

The governor made the call after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

He said the current mood in the country was not about the faith of the presidential candidates, but the dwindling crude oil production due to the activities of oil thieves.

Uzodimma described the spate of oil theft in Nigeria as anti-national and deserving of punishment.

He said: “I want to use this opportunity to invite you people (the media) to prioritise our area of interest. First, the mood of the country today is not about who the candidates are. The mood of the country is that two or three years ago, we were producing 2.1 million barrels of crude oil every day.

“For over 12 years, that has been our main source of foreign exchange. Suddenly, because of the activities of those who are of anti-national interests, we have lost over a million barrels and barely managed to produce one million.

“I think we should rise in unison to condemn the activities of crude oil theft by anti-Nigerian interest groups and bring back the economy of the country because you have to have a country first before you have a president.

READ ALSO: APC governors will deliver 22 states for Tinubu/Shettima in 2023 —Uzodimma

“Look at the quantum of banditry going on in Nigeria today, to the extent that bandits are courageously coming into the capital city. We should rise in unison and condemn these activities.”

The governor also challenged the media to concentrate more on things that would unite Nigerians.

He added: “We should make emphasis on things that will unite the country and by the grace of God abandon those things that are capable of dismembering the country.

“Our national interest is important. Our national unity is important. Our ability to live together as brothers and sisters is also important.

“The primary purpose of government is for the security of lives and property and the welfare of our citizens. To what extent have we supported the federal government in achieving this primary purpose?

“Those are things that should occupy our minds now. But if you throw Nigeria into a situation where religious dichotomy, ethnic jingoism will be at the front burner, it means you are working against Nigeria.

“So, let us allow political parties who have chosen their candidates, no matter the religion where they come from, to go out and do their campaign.”

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