The United Kingdom has condemned the ethnic attacks on Igbos living in Lagos State during the just concluded election.
Naija News reported that the British Deputy High Commissioner to Nigeria, Ben Llewellyn-Jones, gave the condemnation during an interview on Nigeria Info FM on Sunday.
Llewellyn-Jones, while stating that the strength and beauty of Lagos lie in its blend of culture and religion as a cosmopolitan city, urged political parties to caution those perpetrating the attacks in their names.
He said, “If you live in London, you are a Londoner, a British-Pakistan, is a Londoner. The British Prime Minister lives in London. My boss, the British Foreign Secretary is clearly British-Sierra Leone and lives in London, they are Londoners.
“Why is it that people who pay taxes, who work, who provide teachers, who built businesses, who create jobs, who live in Lagos, who happen to be from a different ethnicity to some other people are not Lagosians? Of course, they are. The strength of Lagos is its diversity, and if Lagos can’t be that kind of cosmopolitan melting pot of culture and language and all the things it should be, then really how is Lagos going to succeed?
“People chanting anti-Igbo messages and walking on the streets by polling units on elections day is totally unacceptable. Not just in Lagos, but also in Enugu and Rivers where we had our teams as well and many other places.
“It was a very much tougher day for voters which shouldn’t be. But we saw people vote in spite of that, which is truly impressive about the elections.
“I think the right question to people who have been driving this ethnic kind of languages would be, when you go to cities around the world like London, what do you see when you see the success of those places? Because the success of those places is not built upon division but upon unity.
“I think that people who are still using that kind of language should stop, and the party they represent should be saying to them ‘stop now, this is not in our name and you are wrong’.”