" /> Collapsing economy reinforces campaign for true federalism | Hallmarknews
Published On: Sun, Aug 14th, 2016

Collapsing economy reinforces campaign for true federalism

Compelled by the seemingly unworkable structure of the Nigerian Federation, former President Goodluck Jonathan convened a National Conference in 2014 to address the country’s structural defects.

Recommendations were made but the succeeding President Muhammadu Buhari administration immediately made it clear that it would have nothing to do with it, insisting that what the country needed was good governance, not restructuring.

However, the debate on restructuring returned to the front burner following call by some elder statesmen led by Prof. Ben Nwabueze and a spirited argument in its favour by former vice president, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar during a book launch in Abuja early last Month.

It has since remained a hot topic, sustained by the activities of militant groups in the Niger Delta and the unfolding economic challenges threatening to throw the country into depression. This has led to many top political figures predicting doom as the only consequent of failing to restructure.

Few days ago, Atiku reinforced this prediction during the Usman Kastina Memorial Conference held in Kaduna, noting that restructuring was now unavoidable.

In a paper titled “Restructuring Nigeria for Greater National Integration and Democratic Stability,” he said it was either restructuring was done around a conference table or it happens spontaneously.

“I suggest we resolve today to support calls for the restructuring of the Nigerian federation in order to strengthen its unity and stabilize its democracy. I believe that restructuring will eventually happen whether we like or support it or not,” he said.

“The question is whether it will happen around a conference table, in a direction influenced by us and whether we will be an equal partner in the process. Or will it happen in a more unpredictable arena and in a manner over which we have little influence? It should be at a table and we need to be at that table. A nation is an organism; it grows, it evolves, it changes, it adapts. And like other organisms if it does not adapt, it dies.”

The former Vice President went on to explain that contrary to popular belief, restructuring would actually work in favour of the North.

“I’ve been speaking about achieving greater national integration through devolution and decentralization for some time now because I know that too much concentration of power at the centre hurts the country and the north in at least three critical ways: (1) destroying our economy and values as it does elsewhere; (2) putting too much premium on the struggle for power at the centre; and 3) creating the false perception that the north benefits from the status quo, thus presenting the north as being responsible for the country’s development challenges.”

Across the South, the campaign is gathering momentum. Last week, political leaders of the South West met in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital on the occasion of 50th Anniversary of the zone’s first military governor, Adekunle Fajuyi and insisted that the country had to be restructured.

Ondo State Governor, Olusegun Mimiko in his speech during the event insisted that now was the time to restructure the country as any further delay could be dangerous.

The guest lecturer, Professor Niyi Osundare in his lecture faulted President Buhari’s insistence on the non-negotiability of Nigeria. He noted that Nigeria was already a thousand miles apart.

“No country can ever achieve nationhood when its component parts are as incorrigibly heterogeneous and so mutually antagonistic as Nigeria now is and has always been,” Osundare said.

“This is why those who blissfully aver that ‘Nigeria’s unity is not negotiable’ should quickly reconsider the dangerously complacent certitude in their avowal.

“This was one of the cheesy slogans which propelled the rhetoric of the Nigerian civil war, and it rode to victory in a crass, largely un-interrogated cavalry. But that was in another century, another millennium, another ideological ferment, long before Benedict Anderson’s idea of the Nation as an ‘imagined’ community, and the nation itself as a shiftable, shifting arrangement/artifice with its own unfair share of the profound indeterminacy that is so indigenous to the postmodernist/poststructuralist condition.

“Besides, those who talk so glibly about ‘Nigeria’s unity’ are under the perilous impression that there is a ‘unity’ to ‘negotiate’, in the first place. But a closer look tells us that we are still a thousand miles and a thousand moons from that unity, and that we need to work really hard and honestly for it to come within our grasp.”

At the end of the meeting which had in attendance notable figures like Pastor Tunde Bakare, General Olufemi Olatoye (rtd), the Alani of Ido-Ani; Afenifere leader, Pa Reuben Fasonranti; Governor Olusegun Mimiko; Dr Kunle Olajide; Chief Ayo Adebanjo; Gen Alani Akinrinade (rtd); Chief Cornelius Adebayo; Sehinde Arogbofa, Prof Banji Akintoye among others, the leaders resolved that the only way out of the present economic crisis was restructuring to enable each federating unit develop at its own pace.

Similarly, leaders of the South East Zone had during the Igbo General Assembly held last week in Owerri, Imo State decided that restructuring was the only way forward.

In his address at the event, Professor Anya O. Anya, the President-General, Ndigbo Lagos Foundation noted that as liberal people who love to explore, Ndigbo cannot make progress in the present structure of the country.

“Ndigbo will not flourish in the Nigerian pseudo federation until federalism with its mandatory devolution of powers is restored,” he said.

Same was the key topic during the South East Ministerial Town Hall Meeting in Enugu which saw notable participants like Dr. J Nwodo making a strong case for restructuring.

Individuals of note across the country, including  former head of state, Yakubu Gowon; former Anambra State governor, Chief Emeka Ezeife; Afenifere Chieftain, Yinka Odumakin, Chief Goddy Uwazurike, President General, Aka Ikenga, ACF’s Mohammed Adulrahman and AYCF’s Shettima Yerima have equally at various times stated that restructuring was the only reasonable thing to do.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Recent posts

  • Time is ripe for rates cut, says Rewane as inflation slows further in Oct.

    FELIX OLOYEDE This is the appropriate time for the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to cut benchmark monetary rates after inflation rate slows down for the ninth consecutive time in October, said Mr Bismarck Rewane, Managing Director, Financial Derivatives. The National Bureau of Statistics on Tuesday released Consumer Price […]

  • ELAN National Lease Conference Focuses on Revamping Nigerian Economy

    FELIX OLOYEDE In furtherance of its objective of promoting the business of leasing in Nigeria, Equipment Leasing Association of Nigeria (ELAN) has concluded plans to organise the 15th Annual National Lease Conference with focus on revamping the Nigerian economy. The conference which is the biggest gathering of stakeholders in the leasing industry is expected to […]

  • Nigeria-centric restaurant, Labule, opens new outlet in Lagos

    Labule, Nigeria-centric restaurant, operated by an indigenous company, Roots Foods Limited, offering real Nigerian local delicacies in a unique environment that combines the setting of a modern quick service restaurant with that of an African setting of a local ‘buka’, has opened a new outlet on Admiralty Road in Lekki Phase 1, Lagos. The brand […]

  • Nigerian banks shine in Ghana

    By JOHNMARK UKOKO Nigerian banks have been credited with “revolutionizing “the banking sector in Ghana, due to the many innovations they brought to Ghana’s banking sector. The Ghana Deputy Minister of Trade and Investment Hon. Carlos Kingsley Ahenkorah said in Lagos that the innovation and transformation of the Ghana’s banking sector is credited to the […]

  • Ajimobi moves to save Oyo APC from disintegration

    By OLUSESAN LAOYE The seeming crisis in Oyo APC has now forced the Governor of the state, Abiola Ajimobi, to begin consultations with stakeholders to convinced members on why they must come together as a body to face the 2019 general elections, Although the internal crisis is yet to break open as the aggrieved party […]

  • YolaDisCo sale stalled as no potential buyers emerge

    By ADEBAYO OBAJEMU Two years after the core investors of the Yola Electricity Distribution Company, YolaDisCo, declared a force majeure owing to their inability to operate under the reign of terror unleased by Boko Haram, the Federal Government is yet to find any investor interested in operating the utility company, it has been learnt. In […]

  • Company Analysis: Much Ado about Seplat

      By TESLIM SHITA-BEY The oil and gas sector has had a bumpy since the beginning of 2017 with local oil major, Seplat, seeing its financials whipped raw by prior year liabilities despite rising revenues over the nine months (9M). The company in the last two years has moved from being distinctively bad to singularly […]

  • How to start a photography business

    By ZUBAIR DANIE While photography could be accounted for as a full blown course in any offering institution of learning for professionalism, the field equally provides a platform for individuals whose passion it is to project images as a form of livelihood. The socio-cultural aspect of Nigerians that play host of events like: wedding, naming, […]

  • BOFE to celebrate unsung heroes in local communities

    OluwasolaJesuseitan, a brand and advertising expert, is an advocate of sustainable brand communications. He is also the founder, Business Owners Forum Enterprise (BOFE), a non-profit making organization, which seeks to build the capacity of business owners in and around Akute, Ogun State. He tells FELIX OLOYEDE in this interview of his organization is promoting business […]

  • Lager wars: Who wins?

    By JOHNMARK UKOKO Nigeria has many lager beer producing companies, some have been in existence for over 50 years while others are quite new in existence in the country. Some of these companies that have over the years churned out millions, if not billions of bottles of beer to Nigerian drinkers are: Nigeria Breweries Plc, […]

  • Nestle sparkles in Q3 results

    By OKEY ONYENWEAKU As the packaged Consumer goods (PCG) sector struggles to stay ahead of falling consumer demand, companies such as Nestle Nigeria plc are bucking the trend of businesses with shrinking bottom lines. Indeed the multi-product packaged goods producer has seen earnings rise to mind boggling with its pre-tax profit rising by a stunning […]

  • 2018 Budget proposals renew old anxieties

          FELIX OLOYEDE   Mixed reactions trailed the presentation of the 2018 federal government budget by President Muhammadu Buhari to the National Assembly (NASS) last week. Public policy analysts have expressed moods from the congenially positive to the outright incredulous. The staggering N8.6 trillion expenditure plan is one of the most audacious in […]

  • Anambra 2017: Obiano battles for life

    By Obinna Ezugwu The time has finally arrived. On Saturday the people of Anambra State will head to the polls to either renew the mandate of the incumbent state governor, Chief Willie Obiano who is running for a second term in office, or elect fresh hands from among other prominent contenders, including Mr. Oseloka Obaze […]

  • (Editorial) CBN’s BVN distraction and matters arising

    Nigeria’s fiscal and monetary authorities have a frustrating way of responding to the seizure of private assets; they typically gloat with glazed eyes over private citizen’s money ready to pounce on the cash like a pack of hyenas starved witless. The recent order by the Central Bank of Nigeria that customer accounts that are not […]

  • 12 Yoga tips for beginners

    The popularity of yoga has soared in the last decades, and it seems that every other friend and acquaintance of ours is already practicing it. But don’t let it fool you into thinking it is easy: yoga is quite challenging, especially for beginners. The good news is that there are some practical tips to make […]

  • Finally, embattled IGP, Ibrahim Idris, appears before Senate

    The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has arrived before the Senate ad hoc committee set up to investigate the allegations and counter-allegations between him and Senator Isa Misau. The IGP was accompanied by his lawyer, Alex Iziyon (SAN) and Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Ita Enang.   Details […]


Visit us on Google+