Connect with us

Headline

Restructure Nigeria Before 2023 Elections, Jega Tells FG

Published

on

Former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega, has asked the Federal Government to work towards the restructuring of the country before the 2023 general elections in order to address some challenges confronting the nation.

Jega who stated this while delivering the 2021 Public Lecture at the Achievers University, Owo, Ondo State, with the title “Towards stabilizing the Nigeria federation” stressed the need for the country to embark on short-term restructuring before the general election in 2023.

The former INEC boss noted that the executive and legislative arms have foot-dragging in making the restructuring of the country, urging them to do everything within the ambits of the law to restructure the country.

According to him, there seems to be a lack of political will on the part of those who are at the helm of affairs in the nation’s executive and legislative arms of government, saying the executive seems to have taken a back seat believing that restructuring is purely a legislative matter.

He said, “In the present circumstances, as necessary and desirable as restructuring is, a number of challenges would have to be overcome to successfully bring it about.

“First, passion has been inflamed and allowed to circumscribe the discourses of restructuring, resulting in the emergence of hardened antagonistic positions, which if allowed to persist, would make reconciliation and consensus-building very difficult indeed, if not impossible.

“The perceptions of exclusion, marginalisation, and exploitation are so deep-seated that they nurture and deepen divisions, polarisation, and illogical if not irrational agitations by extremist groups.

“In the circumstances, conversation, debate, and dialogue are, if at all, conducted at cross purposes, obstructive of accommodation of differing opinions and the pursuit of a rational and logical process of consensus-building and bringing about the desirable restructuring of the Nigerian federation.

“Second, in the governance sphere, at both the federal executive and legislative levels, the political will and competence seem lacking for the pursuit of credible and popularly acceptable procedures and processes of bringing about
appropriate and desirable restructuring.

“The executive seems to take a back seat in the belief that restructuring is purely a legislative matter, into which it should not dabble, thereby failing to provide the requisite, proactive leadership for driving the agenda and process of restructuring.


“On its part, the legislature seems to take an overly legalistic posture, impatient with, and indifferent to calls for transparent, inclusive, and people-oriented strategies for achieving popularly acceptable restructuring.

“A broadly participatory, inclusive, and responsive process would lend greater legitimacy to the end product of any restructuring and constitutional amendment processes. Regrettably, members of the National Assembly have failed to recognize the desirability of doing this.

“Third, rather than prioritising restructuring and focusing on addressing the key discernible challenges to power-sharing and resources distribution/allocation amongst the subnational, federating units, the legislature pursues a comprehensive/wholesale constitutional amendment process, with many contentious issues taken onboard simultaneously. This makes the process time-consuming, overly contentious and controversial, and susceptible to filibuster, and likely derailment of the entire undertaking.

“Fourth, leaving the very important business of restructuring until very close to the next general elections has its own challenges, given that Nigerian politicians tend to shy away from taking tough decisions in the national interest, especial on seemingly controversial issues, too close to general elections.”

He, however, expressed optimism that restructuring could be achieved if the stakeholders could do the needful, advocating a short-term restructuring before the 2023 general election.

Jega said “In spite of the challenges, the prospects of restructuring are not as hopeless as some would assume them to be. Nigeria needs stability and increased legitimacy for elected officials in governance; needs good governance, better nurtured and deepened democratic development; and needs economic growth and socio-economic development.

“For all these, better management of ethnoreligious diversity on the basis of rule of law, justice, equity and equality of opportunity, is a necessary precondition. That is what a federal arrangement is meant to ensure, but it is not, if truth is to be told, what the current federal structure and practice of federalism in Nigeria provide. Rather, it ensures an asymmetrical and unequal distribution of power and allocation of resources between the national government and the subnational units, the states.

“Therefore, some form of restructuring in the short-term, before the next general elections in 2023 to reverse the trend and reposition Nigeria as a viable and effective federation, is necessary. One can say without any fear of contradiction that there is at least an elite consensus on the fact that the current Nigerian federal arrangement isn’t optimally working; that indeed it is dysfunctional and needs improvement.

“Where consensus seems lacking is on the nature and extent of restructuring to be undertaken before the next general elections in 2023. If only our elected leaders would try harder, with courage and strong political will, consensus can and should emerge on the thorny issues about the nature and extent of restructuring.

“It may be difficult but it would not be impossible to commence, and achieve some form of desirable restructuring of
the Nigerian federation before the 2023 general elections,” the guest lecturer noted.

 679 total views,  3 views today

Advertisement

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Headline

BREAKING: FG Proposes Extension Of Fuel Subsidy Removal By 18 Months, Seeks To Amend PIA

Published

on

BREAKING: NNPC Increases Petrol Price, To Sell For N170/Litre

The Federal Government is proposing to extend the period for the implementation of the removal of subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as petrol, by 18 months.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva, announced this on Tuesday while briefing State House correspondents in Abuja.

He disclosed that the government has concluded plans to approach the National Assembly to amend the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).

“We are proposing an 18-month extension but what the National Assembly is going to approve is up to them,” the minister said. “We would approve an 18-month extension and then it is up to the National Assembly to look at it and pass the amendment as they see it.

“With assent by the President on August 16, 2021, the PMS subsidy removal was therefore expected to take place effective February 16, 2022. However, following extensive consultations with all key stakeholders within and outside the government, it has been agreed that the implementation period for the removal of the subsidy should be extended.

“This extension will give all the stakeholders time to ensure that the implementation is carried out in a manner that ensures all necessary modalities are in place to cushion the effect of the PMS subsidy removal, in line with prevailing economic realities.

“The President assures that his administration will continue to put in place all necessary measures to protect the livelihoods of all Nigerians, especially the most vulnerable.”

Sylva, who chairs the PIA Implementation Committee, stressed that the decision of the executive arm of government to seek an amendment of the law was not politically motivated.

Rather, he explained that such a move has become necessary to halt the potential suffering of the vulnerable in the society.

The minister believes other measures such as the Dangote refinery, the Port Harcourt refinery, and other modular refineries will have significantly come on stream by the end of the year.

According to him, the new PIA provides for unrestricted market pricing for PMS from the effective date.

Sylva, however, stated that the PIA also envisaged the potential for supply disruption with its resultant effect on the economy.

“Consequently, it provides for a window of six months from the effective date for the government to request the services of NNPC Limited as the supplier of last resort.

“This is to forestall supply disruptions and guide market readiness preparatory to migration to the deregulated pricing regime,” he added.

President Muhammadu Buhari, he stated, has assured Nigerians that his administration would continue to put in place all necessary measures to protect the livelihoods of the citizens, especially the most vulnerable.

 560 total views,  560 views today

Continue Reading

Headline

Former Lagos SSG Adenrele Adeniran-Ogunsanya Dies At 74

Published

on

Former Secretary to the Lagos State Government Princess Adenrele Adeniran-Ogunsanya has died after a brief illness.

It was learnt that Adeniran-Ogunsanya, who served as SSG under former Governor Babatunde Fashola, died on Tuesday.

She was reportedly in a comma for a few days at the Lagos State University (LASUTH) before her death.

The Ikorodu-born grassroots politician and daughter of chairman of the Nigerian People’s Party (NPN) in the Second Republic Chief Adeniran Ogunsanya was apex leader of the Lagos4Lagos movement which recently defected from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Her illness prevented her from attending the group’s official defection ceremony at the Tafawa Balewa Square on Saturday, January 22.

Details later…

 545 total views,  545 views today

Continue Reading

Headline

‘No Going Back On Our Nationwide Protest’, Says NLC Despite FG’s Suspension Of Fuel Subsidy Removal

Published

on

…As FG Proposes Extension Of Fuel Subsidy Removal By 18 Months, Seeks To Amend PIA

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has vowed to continue with its planned nationwide rally on Thursday, despite the announcement by the Federal Government that it would no longer remove the fuel subsidy for now.

NLC Deputy President, Joe Ajaero, during an interview on Channels Television breakfast programme Sunrise Daily, explained that the rally is aimed at sensitising Nigerians.

“NLC is still standing on its position,” he said on Tuesday. “The Federal Government didn’t say they have abolished it, they are postponing the evil day.

“What we are doing is sensitisation of Nigerians on this fuel subsidy removal or so-called increase in the pump price of petroleum products.”

The labour leader further explained the reasons for the sensitisation, claiming that the fuel subsidy removal was about inflicting more suffering on Nigerians.

“The NLC is sensitising Nigerians that this is not sustainable; that the idea of fuel subsidy is a hoax which they are using to inflict pains on Nigerians.

“So, our planned rally stands. On the 27th of January 2022, we rally nationwide, including the FCT,” he added.

Ajaero argued that the rally has become necessary to alert members of the NLC on perennial hike in the pump price of petrol and other refined petroleum products.

“We need to put our foot soldiers at alert on any eventual action on this issue of increase in the pump price of petroleum products from the current price to over N300 per litre,” he stressed.

The Federal Government had earlier announced the suspension of the planned removal of fuel subsidy.

The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, had on Monday said the government had suspended the plan to remove fuel subsidy.

She explained that the government would make provisions for fuel subsidy beyond its initial June deadline in the 2022 budget.

Meanwhile, the Federal Government is proposing to extend the period for the implementation of the removal of subsidy on Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), popularly known as petrol, by 18 months.

The Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Mr Timipre Sylva, announced this on Tuesday while briefing State House correspondents in Abuja.

He disclosed that the government has concluded plans to approach the National Assembly to amend the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA).

“We are proposing an 18-month extension but what the National Assembly is going to approve is up to them,” the minister said. “We would approve an 18-month extension and then it is up to the National Assembly to look at it and pass the amendment as they see it.

“With assent by the President on August 16, 2021, the PMS subsidy removal was therefore expected to take place effective February 16, 2022. However, following extensive consultations with all key stakeholders within and outside the government, it has been agreed that the implementation period for the removal of the subsidy should be extended.

“This extension will give all the stakeholders time to ensure that the implementation is carried out in a manner that ensures all necessary modalities are in place to cushion the effect of the PMS subsidy removal, in line with prevailing economic realities.

“The President assures that his administration will continue to put in place all necessary measures to protect the livelihoods of all Nigerians, especially the most vulnerable.”

Sylva, who chairs the PIA Implementation Committee, stressed that the decision of the executive arm of government to seek an amendment of the law was not politically motivated.

Rather, he explained that such a move has become necessary to halt the potential suffering of the vulnerable in the society.

The minister believes other measures such as the Dangote refinery, the Port Harcourt refinery, and other modular refineries will have significantly come on stream by the end of the year.

According to him, the new PIA provides for unrestricted market pricing for PMS from the effective date.

Sylva, however, stated that the PIA also envisaged the potential for supply disruption with its resultant effect on the economy.

“Consequently, it provides for a window of six months from the effective date for the government to request the services of NNPC Limited as the supplier of last resort.

“This is to forestall supply disruptions and guide market readiness preparatory to migration to the deregulated pricing regime,” he added.

President Muhammadu Buhari, he stated, has assured Nigerians that his administration would continue to put in place all necessary measures to protect the livelihoods of the citizens, especially the most vulnerable.

 411 total views,  411 views today

Continue Reading

Recent Posts




JOIN US ON FACEBOOK

Trending