- Why North is afraid of restructuring -ABC Nwosu
- DEVOLUTION OF POWERS: Igbo youths, women, others disagree with ABC Nwosu
Why North is afraid of restructuring -ABC Nwosu
Written by Iheanacho Nwosu,Abuja
DEVOLUTION OF POWERS: Igbo youths, women, others disagree with ABC Nwosu
Written by Clifford Ndujihe
~Vanguard Nigeria. Friday, September 16, 2016
ENUGU-SOME Igbo youths, women and groups have disagreed with former Health Minister, Professor A.B.C Nwosu's comments that Nigeria needs devolution of powers to the 36 states instead of restructuring based on the six geopolitical zones.
In an interview with a national newspaper, yesterday, Professor Nwosu, who stressed the need for the Federal Government to shed some of its functions and resources to the states to stimulate development, said: ''I belong to the school that regards restructuring instead of one that regards devolution of powers.''
Disagreeing with Nwosu, yesterday, the Igbo Youth Movement, IYM; Igbo Women Assembly, IWA; and South East Christian Network, SECN, in a statement said that only regional autonomy anchored on true federalism will save Nigeria.
IYM Founder and Deputy Secretary, Igbo Leaders of Thought, ILT, Evang. Elliot Ugochukwu-Uko, said Prof. Nwosu was merely flying a kite to test the waters and monitor reactions in order to launch an attempt to sell the Northern version of restructuring to Nigerians.
His words: "The North wants to retain the unjust and unfair 36 states and 774 LG structure by all means. Incidentally, that is the crux of the disaffection that is at the root of the bitterness in the land. You cannot retain the source of the anger in the land and claim to have restructured the country by merely devolving more power and resources to the states. That will not stop the agitation, unless they do not want all these agitations to stop.
The only way to restore peace to Nigeria is a restructuring along the lines of six regions as federating units, built on true fiscal federalism, as the 1963 constitution where regions managed their resources and paid a certain percentage to run the centre. Anything short of that will achieve nothing.''
SECN Coordinator, Bishop Micheal Ibeneme, said: ''Prof. Nwosu knows the position of his people (Igbo) at Aburi, Ghana 41 years ago, he knows our people's written position at the 1994/95 constitutional conference, where Abacha even agreed to adopt the six geo-political zones as federating units. Nwosu knows the people's demand for regional autonomy both at Obasanjo's 2005 political reforms conference and Goodluck Jonathan's 2014 confab.”
He knows that the states cannot be the federating units because the real quarrel is how the states and local governments were created to cheat and oppress the East. Is he saying that the East should continue to suffer the cheating? We want our own Eastern Region, where we will explode our potential and go to the moon. Why are they afraid to give us back our beloved Eastern region where Dr. M.I. Okpara proved to the world what we can do? Only a reversal to six regions can save Nigeria now.''
On her part, Chief Mariah Okwor of the IWA said: ''The whole world have advised President Buhari to restructure Nigeria without delay but the North quickly packaged their own perverted version of restructuring and handed it over to some people to sell But it will not work. Since John Kerry handed down the grave warning to both President Muhammadu Buhari and Sultan of Sokoto of the dangers of continuing the unhelpful delay to restructure Nigeria, the enemies of restructuring quickly articulated a watered-down and fake version of restructuring which some people are now struggling to market.
The states cannot be used as federating units because the creation of the states and local government were skewed against our people. Give us back our Eastern region and watch us go to the moon in 10 years. We are caged and imprisoned in this 36 states structure. Prof. A.B.C Nwosu can never succeed in his attempt to sell Northern version of restructuring to us. Nobody will buy it. Only restructuring along six regions is acceptable, anything else is fake and unhelpful."