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Cross carpeting not healthy for our democracy, says Babangida

Former military president Ibrahim Babangida says since 1999, the country’s political parties have lacked “distinct ideologies”.

In a statement on Monday to commemorate Democracy Day, Babangida called for a unique two-party structure which he said would “promote and protect the nation’s democratic institutions”.

“Our political parties since May 29, 1999 have no distinct ideologies with internal squabbles and cross carpeting that is not healthy to our democracy. We must also appreciate the strength and value of our diversity, with due understanding and recognition of the interests of various ethnic nationalities in our hearts,” the statement read.

“Nigeria has had its share of conflicts and political instability, just like many other nations and states, but we have always survived against all odds.

“Our journey to nationhood and democracy from 1960 to date has been characterised by upheavals and turbulences, yet we must cherish our commitment to remain a united country, in brotherhood and respect for one another.

“We must also appreciate the strength and value of our diversity, with due understanding and recognition of the interests of various ethnic nationalities in our heart.”

He said the role of the military in nation-building should not be forgotten.

“In whatever circumstance we find ourselves, we must continue to exercise democratic tenants, which promote freedom and respect of one another,” it read.

The former military president expressed hope that the 2019 election would further consolidate on democratic governance, freedom and security.

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