Pascal Atuma has pleaded with Nigerians against voting along ethnoreligious lines in the 2023 elections.

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The actor, while speaking on the occasion of his 50th birthday, said ethnicity and religious intolerance has bedeviled the country’s development.

He lamented that Nigeria has failed to attain its full potential due to the bad choices of citizens during elections.

“As grateful as I am, I also have mixed feelings because of the adverse effects of tribalism, religious intolerance, bitter politics, and corruption in Nigeria, my country of birth,” he wrote.

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“We have failed to attain our full potential due to bad choices in choosing some of our past leaders. I encourage all Nigerians not to vote along religious, ethnic, and tribal lines come 2023, and youths must rise and save Nigeria.

“The older adults are almost close to their heavens; the younger generation should say no to crumbs while our leaders bury Nigeria and the future of Nigeria before they depart!

“Ethnic and tribal divides are common amongst most countries of the world, but weaponizing ethnicity is more prevalent in 3rd world countries where leaders take advantage of tribal sentiments to appeal to sectional support.

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“Evidence abounds that such leaders hardly can mobilize the entire country’s potential for growth and development.

“Our inability to unite our country has affected our country negatively. Therefore, inefficient governance is a direct result and correlation of tribalism in Nigeria.”

Speaking further about Nigeria’s sociopolitical reality, Atuma said ethnicity has made it extremely difficult for the best hands and professionals to participate in building the country.

“Tribalism put round pegs in square holes. Tribalism will raise primordial favors above rewards for good jobs done, creating a downward slope for GDP, and hence impoverishment is imminent,” he added.

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“If Nigeria must progress, we must eradicate tribalism. Let’s unite the centrifugal forces of Nigeria beyond ethnic and sectional sentiments in the choice of candidates into public office.

“Development and wealth do not speak the language of ethnicity. Growth and development speak a universal language.

“Therefore, if Nigeria can look for the best men and women irrespective of tribe or religion, we will have a chance to rebuild Nigeria from its present ruins caused by years of ethnic politics and confusing religion.”

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