Tag Archives: Restructuring

Restructuring – Why Restructure Nigeria? – By Olamide Noble

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Meaning of Restructuring

Restructuring involves changing the structural archetype around which resources and activities are grouped and coordinated.

Benefits of Restructuring Nigeriaoriginally written by Emeka D. Azubuike (Medium.com)

 Without much ado, let me go into the common or daily benefits of restructuring to Nigeria and with that you can grab the scope of this discussion.

  • Power: The way power generation works today is that if power or a new power plant is built in Kano or Bayelsa, the law requires that it must be connected to the main grid to distribute to everyone and this adds to the cost of generation and transmission to homes and other end users. Restructuring will make it possible for Kano or Imo or Edo or Bayelsa to produce their power and share with those within their state borders and when there is excess they can share to neighboring states.
  • Mineral Resources: Do you know that if your state has any mineral resource from oil to coal to iron to columbite to gold to bauxite and many others we are blessed with you cannot as a state government mine and explore this unless for illegal miners (which comes with lots of risks). With the restructuring, a state like Enugu can tap their coal and explore the uses maximally, Jos, Plateau can explore their tin and columbite and start using to produce airplane parts and create wealth for the state and country.
  • Education: Sadly, this is also in the exclusive lists with the Federal and State government having a shared responsibility which is why we have the state and federal tertiary institutions and the secondary schools as well. Restructuring and full powers to state will have them explore the talents and abilities of students and channel their curriculum and policies to design an education that brings out the complete potentials of students. A State like Ekiti can craft ways to ensure that their Professors start researching and developing papers for development. Ekiti State is known to have produced the most Professors in Nigeria.
  • Police: With a state or regional police, security is assured as states and indigents who understand their territories can take charge of ensuring that the states are safe. The concern of abuse by state governors and executives can be checked with the right laws and policies and over time it will be perfected to be averse to abuse.
  • Autonomy: This will not just be for the sake of autonomy but due to the benefits of the reforms and changes that will come. With the above listed, it will create wealth for these states and people who live Aba, Kano, Otukpo to go and look for greener pastures in Lagos and Abuja. Trust Igbo men, if the South-East can attain economic autonomy no one will leave their villages and Local Governments. Lagos and Abuja and Port Harcourt will not be congested because every man will return to their homes and develop it. Every visits outside your states can be temporary for pleasure or work.
  • Federal Character: This was adopted to help balance our federation and it has become the bedrock of corruption, nepotism in Abuja and federally owned offices and agencies. With all these, Abuja will be less attractive because we would have more organized cities and local governments that are self-sufficient. Development will be widespread across aboard and any region or state that doesn’t develop that will be their burden and responsibility.
  • Ease of Management: When the President realizes that the work has been reduced and decentralized to the states and LGAs, he can relax and focus on other issues. Play oversight functions, monitor, carry out heavier projects and get taxes from states. Every governor will deploy resources to operate on a small scale and same for the LGAs. The states will mini-countries that when one succeeds or fails we can rate their achievements with what is on ground. Presently, they all give excuses for the system that is not designed from growth.

Challenges of Restructuring Nigeria – originally written by Bukar Usman (Guardian Newspaper)

The 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) has provisions for the necessary steps that must be taken and adhered to in amending any of its provisions. Similar provisions were made in the previous constitutions of Nigeria. The procedures for changing or altering the constitution are complex and cumbersome. The framers of the constitution deliberately made it so to discourage frivolities and unwarranted tinkering with the constitution so as to preserve the unity of Nigeria.

The call for the restructuring of Nigeria which in essence is a call for partial or wholesale review of the current 1999 Constitution should be treated under those provisions. It is the perceived difficulties in compliance with those provisions that tend to make some people want to circumvent the process by condemning the existing constitution altogether as a product of a non-democratic process. Some of these people are even calling for a new one that would emerge through what they perceive as the “democratic process.”

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There is no doubt that the restructure advocates are few and localised to some sections of the country. However, many of them are respected and influential in the society. Among them are notable politicians, bureaucrats, academics, lawyers, clerics, traditional rulers and ex-servicemen. Some of them have held public offices. Others are still serving. Some never held public office. There are also notorious armchair critics and non-conformists among them. Some of the advocates are also fairly well off in the society. They cannot therefore be accused of acting on selfish grounds or for material gains. But it is quite apparent that they are out to promote, in the main, sectional interests and agenda that could erode the pillars of our national unity. Some of them promote their views with all the force at their disposal. Others threaten to unleash unimaginable calamity on the nation if their largely narrow and untenable wishes are not granted within a given time, ignoring the undeniable fact that nation-building is a continuous project.

However, there are those who joined the bandwagon in calling for restructuring without knowing the full import of what the concept and content of restructuring entails. This reminds one of the episode under the Gowon administration when some students took to the streets in demonstration, shouting, “Ali Must Go!” Non students joined them innocently, echoing “Ali Must Go!” without knowing what the students were protesting against. Nigeria had witnessed and successfully coped with agitations of both serious and comical elements.

Viewed closely, the restructure advocates essentially anchor their arguments on certain misgivings and perceptions in form and style of governance. They perceive intolerable imbalance in the federal structure, as currently constituted; imbalance in appointments and imbalance in the distribution of resources. They equally perceive the system of governance in practice as unitary, contrary to their yearnings for federalism.

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The question is what are the likely solutions to the myriads of perceptions and arguments for restructuring Nigeria?

Some of the advocates of restructuring propose a return to the 1963 Constitution. They justify this by arguing that it was the only constitution in the nation’s history that was freely negotiated by our revered civilian political leaders. The three initial Regions and later four, created by that constitution, performed wonderfully as units of development under the political and administrative structure. Indeed, there is no doubt that the regions recorded unmatched developments within the rather short time they were operative.

The restructuring advocates point out that all the subsequent constitutions were handed down by the military. They emphasize that the 1999 Constitution currently in operation was a product of the military and that it is a carryover of the unitary system of governance imposed by military-style governance. Hence they call for a re-enactment of “true federalism” and “true fiscal federalism”, the like of the 1960s which left the Regions with sufficient resources to perform. They argue along this line of postulations contrary to the fact that the current 36 states of the federation get more money than the former regions.

But what are the reasons that made Nigeria to jettison the regional arrangement of the 1960s, if it indeed worked satisfactorily?

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Memories are short. Some people seem to forget that it was similar agitations like the current clamour to restructure that brought about the balkanisation of Nigeria into states, ostensibly to redress perceived imbalance that might jeopardise the existence of Nigeria as a country. Emerging from a hard-earned independence, the nationalists could not contemplate such a suicidal act and therefore sacrificed their individual ambitions to sustain the unity of the country.

In their anxiety to bury the ghost of regionalism permanently and to shun the revival of regionalism under any guise, they were not prepared to even tolerate the existence of the residual “common services” after the abolition of the regions. The regional assets were shared to the last kobo, sometimes after a bitter acrimony among the successor states. Some promising regional industrial, commercial and financial undertakings of the likes of Industrial Investment and Credit Corporation (IICC), Eastern Nigeria Development Corporation (ENDC) and Northern Nigeria Development Corporation (NNDC), inherited by the successor states, were starved of funds and allowed to collapse or pale into insignificant entities.

Those who propose, for an experimental period, the creation of “Geo-economic Zonal Commissions,” as a more practicable answer to the clamour for restructuring, need to revisit the circumstances of the demise of IICC, ENDC, NNDC, Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission (OMPADEC) and similar institutions and also critically examine the performance of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). Likewise they should examine the performance of the River Basin Development Authorities. Of course, a new commission has recently been approved for the North-East. Its take-off and success in meeting the objectives of its establishment and the expectations of the people in its areas of operations may inform the nation better and encourage or discourage the establishment of such geo-economic commissions. But would the agitators patiently wait for such evaluation?

While it may be necessary to occasionally undertake a critical self-examination in nation-building, it is unrealistic to prescribe the structure of Nigeria of 1963 to Nigeria of today, let alone of the future.

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Why Restructuring Nigeria is essential – story by Ademola Orunbon

Regionalism has come back to prominence, as the political, economic, cultural and social meaning of space is changing in contemporary Europe. In some ways, politics, economics and public policies are de-territorialising; but at the same time and in other ways, there is re-territorialisation of economic, political and government activity. The “new regionalism” is the product of this decomposition and recomposition of the territorial framework of public life, consequent on changes in the states, the market and the international context. Functional needs, institutional restructuring and political mobilisation all play a role. Regionalism must now be placed in the context of the international market and the European Union, as well as the nation-state.

Since the inception of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, there have been calls for restructuring. This current system being practiced in Nigeria has failed the whole country. The whole country is on fire. What is the way out? Regionalism or restructuring is the answer. It has worked for us before but the only defect is that it promoted ethnic loyalty but on the contrary, regionalism brought development into the country. The three regions were highly competitive and this brought about rapid development.

The West till today enjoys the legacy regionalism gave the country. Majority of the residents of the West are highly educated which has and is still bringing unprecedented growth. The flairs of the type of regionalism practiced during the 1st republic should be worked on and Nigeria should be given an upgraded version.

This current system of governance in practice only makes the politicians lazy. Most of the states are in financial trouble because of the failure of past and successive governments to prepare for the worst. With an improved regional system, the problem of laziness would be curbed to a large extent. It was under regionalism that Nigeria was a pride to Africa. Do not also forget that when Nigeria was practicing regionalism, there was no oil yet discovered. Now that we are in a world whereby oil is falling; regionalism is the answer to Nigeria’s wake up call.

More so, restructuring is a song also on the lips of many Nigerians. It has trended for decades and seems to be an inter-generational topical issue in Nigeria. The persistent call for restructuring takes numerous dimensions, but particularly outstanding is in the dimension of politics. It is no surprise though, because the philosophy behind the existence of every state and the control of its resources bothers on politics. Therefore, when there is a damaged cog in the wheel of the politics of the state, it becomes imperative to politically restructure the state.

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Nigeria as a sovereign state is one that has numerous ethno-tribal groups as matched with its vast territory, large population and enormous land mass. Each of the locales within the Nigerian territory is endowed with either one mineral, vegetative or other natural resources and/or a correspondence of resident human resources (population). In view of this, any knowledgeable administrative analyst would suggest the adoption of the federalist political structure, so as to ensure efficient administration of both the vast territories of Nigeria and its ethno-tribal heterogeneous population.

This is what has been administratively put in place as a political mechanism for governance within the Nigerian polity. The current Nigerian political structure which has its roots in the 1946 Sir, Arthur Richard’s constitution of Nigeria, right from its inception till now has shown symptoms of administratively sick system of government resulting from such issues as the issue of resources control, outcry of marginalisation, issue of ethno-tribal and regional discrimination, and issue of ensuring that every citizen irrespective of age, sex, religion, ethnic, linguistic, regional or tribal affiliation is given a sense of belonging to the country.

Nigeria is Africa’s biggest economy and the most populous black nation on earth. Yet, regional economic inequality and the lop-sidedness of Nigeria’s political system have led to a series of protracted conflicts. The country is currently embroiled in crises similar to the tumultuous time after independence in 1960, when regional and ethnic tensions erupted in a vicious power struggle.

Back then, following a coup against the northern-led government in January 1966, thousands of Igbos living in the northern region were forced to flee to their homeland following the outbreak ethnic clashes. In 1967, Odumegwu Ojukwu, an Igbo military officer, proclaimed the independence of Republic of Biafra, leading to Nigeria’s first bloody civil war, which ended in 1970. Over forty years later, desires for a breakaway still linger. Both the Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra (MASSOB) and the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) aim to restore the state of Biafra and challenge Nigeria’s current political structure.

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Despite being a federal republic, Nigeria has a unitary constitutional arrangement in which the federal government wields overarching powers. Like the United States of America, Nigeria is structured as a federation with 36 states, one federal territory, and 774 Local Government Areas (LGAs), including Abuja. However, unlike the United States, the central government controls the revenues and nearly all of the country’s resources, especially oil and natural gas. Revenues accrue in the Federation Account, where it is allocated monthly to the states and the LGAs, by a federal executive body, the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation, and Fiscal Commission (RMAFC).

The political structure has not always been this way. Prior to the creation of the present-day state of affairs in 1967, Nigeria had four regions under the 1963 constitution, namely Northern Nigeria, Eastern Nigeria, Western Nigeria and Mid-Western Nigeria. Without federal government allocation or revenue from oil, export crops were central to shaping the economy of the four regions, and served as the country’s main source of foreign currency. Political federalism reduced the power of the central government.

Thus, national debate and calls for restructuring are nothing new, but they continue to grow amid economic stress, political uncertainty and recurrent violent conflicts across the country. Especially, ahead of the February 2019 elections, the push for restructuring of Nigeria’s political system is gaining momentum. Groups from the south, which have long championed the call for restructuring in defence of regional economic development, are particularly vocal in their demands for upending the current centralisation of political power.

One of the leading voices challenging the current political structure is current-president Muhammadu Buhari’s running mate in the 2011 election Pastor Tunde Bakare. Bakare emphasised that the time has come for decentralisation to improve regional capabilities and increase local abilities to generate revenues. Currently, Nigeria’s centralisation of political power distorts its political economy by encouraging redistribution instead of productivity. By themselves, most of the constituent parts of the country are not economically viable: Nearly 70 per cent of Nigeria’s state revenue comes from an oil-rich region about the size of Ireland.

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While there is broad and general support for a new constitution in the south and the middle-belt, the north has a vested interest in maintaining the status quo. Fear that change would lead to political domination and economic collapse in the region has resulted in heightened tensions across the country. While the existing constitution is unpopular, especially in the south, rewriting it will not be an easy undertaking. What a new constitution might entail remains controversial and contested.

Yet, restructuring, in the form of political decentralisation and a differential economic model, is necessary, if not sufficient, for solving some of the country’s most vexing problems. To create a more economically viable and politically functional country, Nigeria needs to overhaul its political system. While such changes might, in the short term, trigger upheaval, upset entrenched power arrangements, and exacerbate existing tensions, in the long-term, political restructuring would be beneficial for both north and south. As former President Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida stated in 2017, Nigeria’s future is inextricably linked to restructuring its political system. However, political restructuring will only succeed if pursued in a democratically legitimated, participatory and coordinated manner.

The issue of restructuring Nigeria political structure is a topical issue that trends on the front page of the paper of every Nigerians or elite in Nigeria. No matter how one wants to elude it, this issue needs a quality look and an addressing touch. Therefore, all Nigerians and our leaders should stop playing the ostrich on the issue of restructuring the Nigeria political structure. A joint effort towards restructuring the Nigerian federalism will make Nigeria a better country where needless tensions and conflicts are minimal and where the sub-national governments are not reduced to mere appendages. So, urgent steps need to be taken so as to change the status quo to one that will work despite the multifarious ethnic-regional nationalities in the country.

Ademola Orunbon a journalist and public affairs analyst, wrote from Federal Housing Estate, Olomore, Abeokuta, Ogun State.

He can be reached via: orunbonibrahimademola@gmail.com or 08034493944 and 08029301122


By Adigun Michael Olamide

Enahoro – It is time to restructure Nigeria.


A veteran journalist and activist, Mr. Peter Enahoro, yesterday called for the restructuring of Nigeria with a warning that the continued delay to address the issue was dangerous for the country.

He said there was no better time to make the drastic decision for equity between the North and South than now.

He, however, explained that for this to happen, militant southerners and progressive northerners must collaborate to rejig the country.

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Speaking yesterday, he said the far North had depended on the South for too long and that some parts of the country had suffered the decision since the British rule.

He said: “Nigeria cannot be great without restructuring. If we had militant southerners, by now we will be on the brink of breaking up. But right now, we don’t have them and no one is ready to do it. The only people who tried it are the Igbo and they were defeated. I don’t think anyone will try it again, but power has to be taken away from people who squander it. How long can this go on? This has got to stop if Nigeria is to progress, and it will only be done if an alliance is made between militant south and the progressive north. This will not happen without pressure. Nationhood takes time, and this is the time.

“A colleague was interviewing someone on restructuring recently, and the interviewer said North-west will not permit restructuring. I almost fell from my bed. Who is the North-west to decide for the whole country? We must accept the fact that it cannot go on like this anymore. If you are from the Delta region, you will see that your waters and fishes have been polluted. You will have to go several miles to get fishes. When these same people need something from the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), they will have to go to Daura for help. This is a country where fellow citizens say they were born to rule over others. This got to stop.”

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According to him, the kind of restructuring Nigeria needs is the type where states or regions that work hard would have to benefit more.

He said the present situation makes it possible for the far North to always live at the expense of the South, which has the resources.

He said: “People go to Mecca virtually every year when the Koran has said you can go once in your lifetime. Where do you think the money for the waste is coming from? It is from oil. This is a scandal and that is where we are today. What is needed is that states which work hard should be the richest. The richest public officeholder in America is not the president. When Bill Clinton was governor for 12 years, his salary was less than that of a mayor in New York because New York had more money. Nigeria has deteriorated because we have leaders without a clue.

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“We have allowed the far North to dictate to this country. The amalgamation of the North and South was only because the North had no money and it was always broke, whereas the South had a surplus, and Lord Lugard at the time just merged the two.

“Money from the South was used in assisting the North. The far North is the spoilt child of the federation.”

He explained that without restructuring, the brilliant Nigerians in certain states would not get their dues because of the present quota system.

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He stated that such persons could not get into institutions of learning they deserved to because people from other regions with fewer qualifications would also have slots to fill.

He described the system being operated in the country as one where the hardworking ones were being pulled down, adding that this was reflective in the standard of education and healthcare in the country.


#Newsworthy…

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Nigeria need to be restructured so not to experience war – Group tells FG


The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum has called on the Nigerian Government to immediately restructure the country in order to prevent a war.

The group in a statement on Sunday signed by Yinka Odumakin (South-West), Gen. C.R.U Ikekire (South-East), Senator Bassey Henshaw (South-South) and Dr Isuwa Dogo (Middle Belt), said frustrations by different nationalities living in Nigeria must be addressed as the situation had reached tipping point.

The statement reads, “Warnings to Nigeria from the two oldest ex-leaders in two months that the country must restructure to avoid a war situation is not lost on us as Nigeria rolls from one challenge to another.


“First was Gen. Yakubu Gowon, who warned in January that Nigeria must urgently deal with the business of restructuring to avoid another civil war as a country.

“Gowon was the man who led the country through its last civil war from 1967-70.


“The latest admonition is coming from Gen. Olusegun Obasanjo, who fought vigorously in the war to keep Nigeria united but is now warning us 50 years after the hostilities ended that we need to restructure now to save the country from anarchy and break-up.

“It is sheer wishful thinking for anybody to assume that the displeasure that various nationalities are feeling over the many attendant inequities of unitary Nigeria can disappear with strong-arm tactics and bullying those at receiving ends with terror gangs on rampage around the country.

“A cursory look at events around the world in recent years have shown clearly that the force of arms cannot succeed in keeping together any diverse people brought together by historical circumstance but refuse to constitute themselves with respect, justice and understanding.

“We align with the patriotic interventions of the leaders and call on those in the saddle to look beyond temporary gains of power and heed the advice to set this country on the path of negotiation, inclusiveness and a federal constitutional order.”


#Newsworthy…

Don’t allow agitation for Restructuring lead to war – Obasanjo to Buhari


Former President Olusegun Obasanjo has said the present government needs to heed the agitations of those clamouring for restructuring before such agitations develop into self-determination.

Speaking in Lagos on Saturday at the first memorial lecture organised in honour of the founder of the Oodua People’s Congress, Dr Fredrick Fasehun, the former President advised the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) to heed the call now before it would be too late.

He said Nigeria could not afford to be plunged into another war because the nation might not survive the second civil war.

Obasanjo, who said insecurity was a major concern in Nigeria, commended the South-West governors for establishing the Western Nigeria Security Network popularly known as Operation Amotekun.

He particularly commended Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde “for his leadership on this matter and for sharing their thinking with me.”

The former President said no section of the country should think it would be easy to quell any other region that might want to secede if the agitation for restructuring was not addressed.

He stated that the agitation while he was in office was for true federalism but now it had changed to restructuring.

He said, “President Goodluck Jonathan’s effort of a National Conference did not even get to the National Assembly. Today, the agitation has moved up to restructuring. Thanks to Buhari’s administration and its impunity and all. With the fractional political division, poor management of the economy, the non-protecting security and the politics of uncertainty in the land, we should not allow restructuring agitation to degenerate to self-determination.

“There is still a window of opportunity for us to nip in the bud a possible and indeed likely agitation for self determination that will be violent, destructive and all-empowering. We have descended to lack of civility bordering on uncivilisation, indignity, mutual disrespect and crudity in the language of our debate, dialogue, discourse, address, comments and remarks across tribe, section, religion, region, ethnicity and community.

“If not halted, it will degenerate and poison the atmosphere to the tipping point or point of no return.”

Obasanjo, who played an active part in the Nigerian Civil War, said the military then planned that it would crush the Biafran soldiers between three and six months. He, however, said Nigeria almost lost to Biafra but managed to defeat the agitators after 36 months.

He said, “And before we descend any further, let me warn, from experience, those who are beating the drums of war and domination from all quarters. I joined late Bisalla, under General Hassan Katsina, to write the appreciation and the operational instruction for the (Nigerian) Civil War.

“We estimated that Federal Government would suppress the Biafran rebellion within three months. To make allowances for the unforeseen, we allowed six months. But it took us 30 months, five times what we allowed for, and what is more, we nearly lost the war. And as a field commander at the end of the war, I can attest that we fought with all Nigerian tribes, including Igbos against Biafra.”

He said the National Assembly appeared to be aware of the lurking danger and wanted to be proactive but he said the constitution did not give them the power to write a new constitution but to amend the existing one.

“What is required is a new constitution to meet the agitation and aspiration of all Nigerians and to allay all fears. The executive and the legislature need to work together to establish a Constituent Assembly.

He continued, “And if after over 10 years of fighting Boko Haram, the terrorist group is still waxing strong, let nobody out of self-delusion think that a war of self-determination by one or more geopolitical zones of Nigeria with the present disenchantment would be easily suppressed by the rest of what may remain of the country.

“Some will fight to the last drop of the blood of their group rather than suffer the indignity of slavery, oppression, domination and atrocious injustice in the land of their birth and the only one that they can call their country.

“If Boko Haram can get an outside support, any geo-political zone opting for self-determination may equally get an external support. War may not necessarily go as planned, estimated and predicted. “Everything must, therefore, be put in place to avoid a war, the end of which no one can precisely predict.

“There is no assurance that Nigeria can survive a second civil war. But rather, we should seek political solution and avoid a destructive civil war.

“This is the situation today. Let us put our experiences to work and fashion out a political order and arrangement that will strengthen our togetherness while making room for healthy and useful competition within the one entity, Nigeria.

“We need not go the way of Yugoslavia or Sudan and certainly not the way of Rwanda and Somalia. But none of these countries knew the avoidable and divisive end from the beginning. Let us learn from the experience of others and of our founding fathers who resolved their political differences through dialogue and debate without resorting to violence and separation but accommodation, telling themselves hard truth, tolerance and give-and-take spirit. That was the foundation of Nigeria at independence and let it continue to be.

“If all we are interested in is power and not holding the country together harmoniously and wholesomely, we may hold the mirage of power and lose the nation or the country bequeathed to us by our founding fathers.

“Today, we can still collectively debate, dialogue and lead our country to where, by consensus, we will want it to be as a united, strong, harmonious, dynamic, fast developing, productive, fast growing and progressing nation with sufficient leeway for autonomous development and management by component units on the basis of healthy competition, mutual respect, caring and sharing for one another, within one nation and one destiny, with shared values, common goals and venerated diversity.

“There are still people of goodwill who can speak up and speak out and take effective and positive actions individually and collectively that will corporately save the country from rudderlessness and disintegration. We must allow a stitch in time to save nine, so that we are not pushed to the realm of the unknown and which may be for all of us, undesirable.”

The National Publicity Secretary of the Arewa Consultative Forum, Anthony Sani, who spoke before Obasanjo, said although there was no harm in restructuring, he said he did not believe the time was ripe for restructuring now.

He said, “While I do not oppose restructuring, the problem might not be restructuring and I am not sure that restructuring, at a time when there is so much distrust, will be the solution.”

The new President of OPC, Prince Osibote, expressed worry about the insecurity in the nation.

Osibote said, “We are saddened by the state of insecurity in the land. The challenge is exacerbated by unbridled poverty, illiteracy and ignorance coupled with lack of vision and character by a section of the Nigerian political class.

“We frittered away ample opportunities that came our way to consolidate on our strength, human capacities and natural endowments.

“We unambiguously denounce the spilling of blood in the land, banditry, abduction, and other forms of heinous crimes that have almost made life miserable in some parts of the country.”

One of the children of the late OPC founder, Olubunmi, appreciated those present at the ceremony.

He said, “I want to appreciate you all for coming to honour our late father. We now know that you loved our father when he was alive. “

Among those present at the lecture were former Osun State Governor, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola; Oyewole Fasawe; the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, who was represented by the Asoya of Isoya, Oba Muraina Adebanjo; the President of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, John Nwodo who was represented by the Lagos State Chairman, Chief Solomon Ogbonna.


#Newsworthy…

Nigerians are yet to see promised Restructuring


The Major General Muhammadu Buhari regime has yet to implement a substantial part of its promised restructuring.

Findings by NobleReporters revealed that since the ruling All Progressives Congress bowed to pressure to set up the Nasir El-Rufai APC Committee on True Federalism, just a little has been done to fulfil its campaign promise.


Not only did the committee which submitted its report on January 25, 2018 make recommendations on key items of interest, it articulated executive and legislative, and other action plans on how to achieve set objectives.

The committee recommended that, “The Federal Government should urgently direct the Revenue Mobilisation Allocation and Fiscal Commission to, among others, fashion out a new revenue allocation formula in consonance with the provisions of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), which envisages a periodic review of the formula.”


This, the report said, should “take account of items devolved from federal to state governments”. Furthermore, since Section 162 (2) of the constitution already provides for principle of derivation of not less than 13 per cent, there is clearly room for its upward review.

However, apart from the directive of the Financial Intelligence Unit restricting states from tampering with council funds, which some observers believe is “a secret” a presidential directive and the amendment to the Petroleum Profit Tax Act, 2007 by the National Assembly, the bigger issue of devolution of powers and a provision allowing for a referendum on key national issues have remained unattended to.


The committee on page 25 of Volume 1 of its “Main Report, Summery of Findings and Recommendations” recommended that, “the party put its political weight behind the overwhelming popular demand for devolution (of powers) to states by the Federal Government.”

Action on this recommendation is still being awaited even as the Senate has inaugurated its committee on Constitution Review.


The Chairman of the Buhari Media Organisation, Niyi Akinsiju, said Buhari remained committed to fulfilling his campaign promises to Nigeria.

He said most of the items contained in the report of the report required a review of the existing provisions in the constitution, which he said was the function of the National Assembly.


Akinsiju said it was after the National Assembly had concluded work that a final copy would be sent to the President for his assent.

He said, “By the latest statement from the National Assembly after the inauguration of the Constitutional Amendment Committee, the chairman (of the committee) said they were going to take the report into consideration. The report was actually submitted to the National Assembly just like the report of the confab they said they would also consider.


“To that extent, the APC has done its groundwork which is appropriate and they had also followed the proper channel because anything that has to do with the constitution or its amendment, the primary custodian is the National Assembly.

“The APC has done consultations and aggregated and distilled the thoughts and opinions of Nigerians across board collated the report and forwarded to the National Assembly which is the proper channel.


“And I think for every other Nigerian, this is another opportunity to also express and advance their thoughts on how this country should be managed in terms of restructuring or otherwise which is constitutional.

“Don’t forget, the President has said this several times that whoever has any opinion on the issue should approach the National Assembly and I think this is the time to do it.”


The APC in Article 7(ii) of its April 2014 Constitution as amended) said its Aims and Objectives was: “To promote true federalism in the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”

In the foreword to its vision for a New Nigeria (Page 3, second paragraph), the APC Manifesto commits the party to “Implement efficient public financial management strategies and ensure true federalism” as well as “restructure governance in a way that kick starts our political economy so that we begin to walk the path of our better future.”

Also, on page 7 of its manifesto, the part entered what it referred to as an “Honest Contract” with Nigeria to create a federalism with “more equitable distribution of national revenue to the states and local governments because this is where grassroots democracy and economic development must be established.”

In pursuit of the above, the El-Rufai committee articulated 24 items of interest to Nigerians according to numerous submissions from members of the public. They are the creation of states, merger of states, derivation principle, fiscal federalism, devolution of powers and resources between state, federal and local governments, federating units, form of government, independent candidacy, land tenure system, local government autonomy ,power sharing and rotation, resource control, types of legislature, demand for affirmation for vulnerable groups; people with disabilities, women and youths, ministerial appointment, citizenship, state constitution, community participation, minimum wage, governance, judiciary, state realignment and border adjustment, circular status of the federation; and referendum.


#Newsworthy…