Decades after independence, Nigeria as a country is still struggling to have its footing and define a future for themselves. We are a crawling giant that even toddlers overtake in a race for development and sustenance.
If Nigeria is not restructured, we will all be losers as we will never make any progress despite our population and enormous human and material resources. No country which has refused to brace its past, come together on a table and honestly dialogue its existence will ever make it. Cries of marginalization and agitation to secede has met stiff opposition and repressive killings from the federal government instead of tackling the issues head on and find lasting solution to them.
injustice is the bane of the current Nigeria, and what agitators of secession and restructuring are fighting for is equal rights and justice.
What Nigeria currently need is true Federalism, whereby powers are shared between a central government and its component units, such as regions or states in a way that one tier of government is not superior to the other. The power of the central government will reduce, but it won’t be weak as it will retain responsibilities such as the armed forces and security services, citizenship and immigration, foreign affairs, and the central bank.
To achieve this, the 1999 Constitution which is more or less a military or dictatorial constitution has to be completely jettisoned, and people oriented constitution put in place. The component units that made up the state will be allowed to control their resources and sources of revenue, while they pay a certain percentage to the coffers of central government. This will allow the regions to look to look inwards for what will sustain them, and also develop at their own pace and not rely on the handouts from the central government in the name of monthly allocation to survive.
Nigeria is a country in dire straits, and all the lifelines to save it have been used except restructuring. If the country is not restructured, it will go up in flames and there won’t ever be anything like Nigeria again. Nigeria has never been as polarized as it is today, as the government in place has consistently made the masses understand that it’s a sectional government and can’t cater for the lives of all, except his people. In the present setting, MIGHT IS RIGHT as long as your brother is in power.
We can’t continue living a lie. A place where people are killed indiscriminately and the president turns a blind eye because it’s his people that are the aggressors. A place where there are different rules depending on the region you come from. A place where quota system takes precedence to qualification. A country where a child from a particular region must have to score 250 points to secure admission into unity school, while a child of that same age from the northern region will only have to score 2 points to gain the same admission.
One Nigeria is a ruse, and there’s an overwhelming need to restructure now or burn never to rise again.
By Odumodu Gbulagu
AFRICA TODAY NEWS, NEW YORK