May 10, 2013, 10:55 AM
More than 20 heads of state, among them President Yahya Jammeh, were in Abuja, Nigeria, Thursday as guests of President Goodluck Jonathan for the centenary celebration of the amalgamation in January 1914 of southern and northern Nigeria into one country.
The British colonial authorities on January 1, 1914 formally amalgamated what were then the separate protectorates of southern and northern Nigeria. The amalgamation gave birth to the single geo-political entity known as Nigeria. Lord Lugard was then the colonial administrator of the two territories.
January 2014 marks one hundred years of the union that created and gave birth to the country now known as Nigeria.
In his keynote address at Thursday’s centenary conference on the theme: “Human Security, Peace and Development: Agenda for the 21st Century”, attended by several world leaders, President Goodluck Jonathan called for closer ties among African leaders, with a view to confronting and defeating terrorists and purveyors of hate.
“While we respect our national boundaries, terrorists move in and out of our borders. It is now time that we agreed as African leaders that acts of terror against one nation is an act of terror against all.
“We must not allow our countries to become safe havens for terrorists. We must cooperate maximally in better managing our political boundaries. We should adopt protocols that allow countries to pursue terrorists well into their safe havens in other nations. While we cannot redefine our borders, we must re-define our collective approach to ending trans-boundary terrorism and insurgencies.” Jonathan said.