Meanwhile, former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, has dismissed any potential threat to Nigeria’s unity as a result of the activities of some pro-Biafra group.
General Gowon, who noted that Nigerians have put behind them the ugly memories of the 1967 civil war, pointed out that those behind the protests were youths who have no idea what the war cost Nigerians.
The elder statesman was speaking in Lafia, the Nasarwa State capital shortly after a malaria eradication campaign visit to Governor Tanko Al-Makura.
He expressed confidence that the campaign was being driven by just a few people and that majority of the Igbo people do not share the view.
While admitting that they protesters had the right to express their feelings he stated “with Biafra it is finished”.
A former Nigerian Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon (Rtd), has admonished the military to correct the negative perception of the Nigerian military who have in the past had records of professionalism and competence.
General Gowon spoke against the backdrop of reports suggesting that soldiers were fleeing from militants in the north-east rather than doing the needful.
In a statement delivered on his behalf by the former Governor of Lagos State, Retired Colonel Buns Maruwa in Abuja on Tuesday, Gowon also urged the military to make a demand for equipment from the recent one billion dollars loan acquired by the Federal Government .
He assured the military his support and that of past military leaderships as it goes all out to flush the insurgents out of Nigeria.
Recently the military had court martial some soldiers for mutiny, sentencing some to death.
They were accused of firing life bullets at a superior official, something they claimed they did in grievance, triggered by alleged ill treatment.
For over five years, the military had continued to battle the Boko Haram sect in the north-east, but little result has been noticed, as the terrorist group has continued to carry out attacks in the region.
President Goodluck Jonathan has heaped encomiums on former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, describing him as a worthy, steadfast and iconic feature of Nigerian history.
In a congratulatory letter to General Gowon on the occasion of his 80th birthday, President Jonathan said that the nation would always owe the former Head of State a huge debt of gratitude for successfully managing and guiding Nigeria through an unfortunate civil war out of which it emerged as an even stronger and more united nation.
“As you deservedly celebrate this noteworthy anniversary on Sunday, October 19th, 2014, I join your family, friends, protégés and well-wishers in celebrating you and thanking Almighty God for the unique and richly fulfilled life He has blessed you with these past 80 years.
“Over the years, you have continued to use your exalted position to engender bridges of love and harmony across the country; availing successive governments of your wise counsel, and demonstrating your unwavering faith and willingness to partner with us in our quest to bequeath to our collective posterity, a nation of which we can all be proud. Nigeria owes you a huge debt of gratitude,” President Jonathan wrote.
The President wished General Gowon very happy 80th birthday celebrations and prayed that Almighty God would continue to bless, guide and protect him.
Former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, is tackling the numerous challenges facing Nigeria, on the spiritual front.
While efforts are being made on the political front to find solutions to these issues, General Gowon on Monday, November 4, led other members of ‘Nigeria Prays’ in a prayer session in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital.
The Former Head of State noted that the problems confronting the country require divine intervention, and prayed God to forgive the country of its sins.
The prayer session was also attended by the Kwara State Deputy Governor, Peter Kishira.
General Yakubu Gowon was the Head of the Federal Military Government of Nigeria from 1966 to 1975. He took power after a military coup d’état and was overthrown in another. During his rule, the Nigerian Government successfully prevented Biafran separation during the 1967 to 1970 Nigeria Civil War.