The Chairman of Air Peace, Mr. Allen Onyema, took passengers by surprise when he preached peace and unity on board a Lagos-Abuja flight.
The Lagos-Abuja flight 7120 was operated with the airline's wide-bodied Boeing 777 aircraft which had over 300 passengers on board.
"We must not lose hope in our country. Our diversity is our greatest strength", Onyema said on Wednesday morning.
Coming at a time of ethnic tension and agitation for secession across the country, Onyema restated that Nigerians must consistently embrace peace and see the country's diversity as a source of strength.
He said Nigeria is better off as one indivisible nation, stressing that balkanizing the country is not the solution.
He stated: "Nigeria is for all of us. The bigger Nigeria is the best thing ever that can happen to Nigeria. We don't need to balkanise this country; we don't know what we have got having this country called Nigeria. Our diversity should be our strength and not our albatross.
"The diversity we have is the best thing that can ever happen to this nation. Let us make it work; let us stop engaging in blame games. Let us stop engaging in the stigmatisation of ethnicities, let us work as Nigerians," he told the passengers.
Onyema, who initiated the training of Niger Delta youths in the early 2000s, which later culminated into the amnesty programme under the late President Umar Yar'adua, said the United States is a conglomeration of people from diverse nationalities who worked together to build a great nation.
"America is the melting point of all ethnicities in the world. You have Igbo America, Fulani America, Yoruba America, and Anglo American from England, from Russia also and all over the world. Yet when they get the passport, they profess America.
"However, in my country with all our capacity the first thing we profess is our ethnicity, I am an Igbo, Yoruba, I am Hausa. Can we stop this?
"This country can be better than it is. It is not the fault of government, it is not your fault; it is the collective effort of all of us that can make it work not just government alone.
"I want you to have hope in your nation; do not lose hope. Don't feel that the worst has come to happen. We have passed through this stage before, let our diversity be our strength and this country will remain great," Onyema who rescued Nigerians from South Africa during Xenophobia violence in 2019, added.