There’s been the unique call and agitations for the restructuring of the federation by members of the legislature and political echelons of the country. This clamour or restructuring has been fuelled majorly by some sections of the states who are seriously feeling a great sense of marginalisation and lack of equity in the distribution of the national resources.
The honourable Governor of Kaduna state is the latest amongst the numerous agitators to see the need and urgency why the restructuring must be done as soon as possible.
Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna, says it is time to restructure Nigeria in order to ensure equitable distribution of resources.
Speaking at a public lecture to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Arewa House, held in Kaduna on Saturday, the governor maintained that restructuring the country is in the best interest of ensuring sustainable development.
Gov El-Rufai, who cited the 2018 recommendations of the APC committee on restructuring, noted that there was a need to reorganise the country’s constitutional framework in order to give states more control over certain resources.
The focus of the APC committee, which was set up in 2017 and chaired by el-Rufai, was to establish the party’s position on restructuring in line with ensuring that all Nigerians benefit from true federalism.
Under the proposed restructured framework, el-Rufai explained that states would have more control over the police, oil and gas resources, minerals, correctional facilities, stamp duties, registration of business names, among others.
“I am not aware of any significant constituency that is against the idea that states should exercise consequential powers; assume more responsibilities and control resources to enable them deliver better outcomes for those they govern. This will empower state governments to cease passing the buck to the president and the federal government when most of the problems our citizens face daily as a nation are, and can be solved by improved and focused governance at the states’ levels,” he said.
“It is time to make this sort of well-defined restructuring work, for the benefit of the peoples of this country.
“The report of our APC true federalism committee puts in one place the recommendations, and the legislative amendments to give life to a restructured polity. I therefore call on our federal legislators and the national assembly ad hoc committee on constitutional review to take advantage of our report and initiate the constitutional and legislative amendments in either a piece-meal or comprehensive manner without further delay.
“We, therefore, have no excuse not to seize this moment and do the heavy lifting for our country and our people. It is in our hands to make the structures, laws and constitutional arrangements in our country conducive to modern governance that will ensure our nation thrives in the 21st century.”
Many citizens of Nigeria are of the view that just as we as a federation, were bold enough to relinquish the military rule and regime to embrace the practice of democracy so too we must be ready for change in the area of restructuring.
We must see the need why this restructuring has to be done because for some legislators it will serve a better purpose in moving both the national economy forward and improved standards of living as well as an atmosphere for investments investors and development.
While some self centered elements within the federal government may militate against these suggestions. It is now becoming an increasingly positive option many political office holders are contemplating as a means of solution towards the challenges faced by the nation.
Gift Joseph Okpakorese