Restructuring Is Highly Inevitable – Jega – :::…The Tide News Online:::… – The Tide

A former National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof Attahiru Jega, has said for Nigeria to grow and prosper, it must restructure its current federal system, which he said was imbalanced and poorly managed.
Jega, who stated this in a paper he delivered at the 4th public lecture at Nasarawa State University, Keffi, argued that “restructuring is highly inevitable and the time to start is now.”
In the paper titled, ‘Restructuring the Nigerian Federation: Challenges and Prospects,’ the don said, “As a way out of the logjam, the country must come to terms with the challenges and prospects of restructuring. We need to come to terms with the fact that restructuring is necessary.”
While advocating restructuring, Jega warned that the approach and mechanism deployed in pursuing the agenda were very vital in achieving the desired goal.
“The fundamental question yearning for an answer is: how can the Nigerian federation be restructured to make it efficient and effective in satisfying the needs and aspirations of its citizens, to substantively manage diversity, to forge unity and sense of belonging for and by all, and to bring about democratic and socioeconomic development beneficial to all citizens?” he asked.
As a panacea, Jega advocated a three-phase restructuring agenda in accordance with what he termed as the “principle of incremental positive changes.”
He proposed that restructuring could be done in the short term, 2021-2023; medium term, 2023-2027; and long term, beyond 2027.
Author Wants Youths To Participate In Politics
Don’t Quit Politics, Edo PDP Leaders Beg Party Chieftain
The Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF), has denied alleged disbursement of N243.8 billion from the Paris Club refunds to states in the month of August.
The NGF Secretariat disclosed this in a statement issued by its Head, Media and Public Affairs, Abdulrazaque Bello-Barkindo, on Friday in Abuja.
Bello-Barkindo described the allegation as a big lie and a figment of the imagination of its author.
He said that the announcement making the rounds that a disbursement of N243.8 billion to states in the month of August came to the attention of the forum as a surprise.
“The NGF wishes to state categorically that nothing can be farther from the truth as this disbursement did not happen and could not have happened as there are no further possibilities, that they can happen now, or in the future.
“The lie is further accentuated by the fact that the announcer has remained anonymous and to all intents and purposes, faceless.
“If it were true and the announcer sure of his facts, he would have owned the announcement in case anyone wanted to verify the information. But alas! “The faceless announcer of the fake disbursement, is apparently, completely oblivious of, or even clueless, about how the Paris Club refunds came about.
“This ignorance is either a sincere lack of knowledge of the process, or a deliberate effort to cause confusion in the land,” Bello-Barkindo said.
He added that the Paris Club was not a reserve institution from which the Federal Government could dip its hands and share monies to States.
He said it was a cumulative over-payment of debts by States, which had been refunded.
Bello-Barkindo called on the announcer of the rumour to desist from spreading malicious, mischievous and false information to the Nigerian public, especially where it involves money.
He said that such act could undermine the nation’s stability, especially at this inauspicious time when Nigeria’s finances are lean and security temperament fragile.
“There are myriads of ways to encourage the population to call their leadership to account but stoking the embers of discord by dishing out false information is doing the states, the governors and the citizens, as a whole, a disservice or even a calamity that no responsible citizen invites on his people.”
An author, Mr Abuyere Elvis, says there is need for the older generation politicians to create enabling environment for the youth to explore their political potential and to effectively contribute their quota to national development.
Elvis said this while speaking with newsmen on the sideline of the launch of his book titled:” Run With the Challenges of Life”  in Abuja on Saturday.
The author noted that youth had a lot to offer to the country’ s development, but needed a push and encouragement from the older generation of political leaders.
According to him, the youth are not given the desired opportunity to fully participate in the country’s political leadership by older generation of politicians.
He described the situation as unfortunate, saying that “there is need for youths to work towards taking their destiny in their hands in the most civil manner by running with every challenge that came their way.
Elvis, however, advised the youth not to give up on their dreams no matter the circumstances, but to run with whatever challenges that came their way.
He said he was inspired to write the book for people to understand that challenges were part of life and that the ability to run with them, would make one a champion.
According to him, challenges have access to everyone, but doesn’t have control over everybody, saying that the challenges that come before him, do not have capacity to stop the vision that is driving him.
“Challenges of life have access to everybody, and nobody has capacity to stop it, the only way forward is for us to run with it on a daily basis.
“If challenges of life are visible, we will go out and probably want to wage a war against it, but because they are invisible and meet us unprepared, we have to run with them.
“So, I want people to read this book and understand that they can run with challenges of life and become champions irrespective of what they are passing through,” he said.
He noted that the youth had so much dreams to achieve but had many setbacks.
He, therefore, advised that no matter the situation or circumstances they might be passing through in life, they should be courageous and remain focused.
According to him, a lot of dreams have been shattered and lots of youths had given up on their dreams because of the challenges they encountered.
He maintained that one could run with whatever vision God had given him no matter the circumstance around the vision.
Elvis added that at all times, one should be able to understand that he had the inbuilt ability to determine how far he wanted to go in life.
“Because when God gives a man a vision, he equips him internally on how to fulfil that vision.
“When you are able to discover your purpose in life and unveil the vision within you, you will be able to run with it,” he said.
Also speaking, one of conveners of the event, Mr Pelumi Olajendesi, said youths were essential currency, needed to move the country forward.
He added that youths had a lot to do to ensure that we had a greater society, saying that:”young people are more energetic, more innovative and they can contribute more to national development”.
Olajendesi noted that recent events had showed that most of the country’s older citizens in government run the system, using the ideas and energy of the younger ones.
He said that it was therefore, very essential that more young Nigerians were brought into the political space for national development.
He said there was also the need to address our general culture and political value system, to ensure the recruitment of sound young people to take over positions of leadership in the country.
He said though young people were making efforts to get into the political system and contribute their quota to national development, they needed support.
“Yes, opportunities are not given on a platter of gold, they are taken, but the truth is that we have a system that has actually excluded the young people.
“So it is not about opportunities, we are not going to encourage people to resort to violence, but we will keep making efforts and participating.
“And, the way to go about that is to give clarion call to young people to understand the political process and participate in it.
“And it starts with getting your Personal Voters’ Card (PVC), getting registered with political parties and participate in political activities.
“Because if you are not involved, no one will call you to come and participate in the political system,” he said.
Olajendesi, however, noted that though a lot of young people were interested and were participating in political activities in the country, they were not being given opportunities to serve or contribute their quota to national development.
Leaders of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Esan Central Local Government Area of Edo State have appealed to a chieftain of the party in the area, Chief Mathew Emiohe, to rescind his decision to quit partisan politics.
The Tide source reports that the leaders were led by a former state Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC) and an ally of Gov. Godwin Obaseki, Mr Aselm Ojezua.
Ojezua, who said that they were jolted by what he described as a sudden decision by Emiohe, appealed to him to reverse the decision, as he was still needed to help reposition PDP in the council area and the state in general.
“We are here because it is significant to have him back. His decision to abandon the house he helped to build is not expected and acceptable.
“Chief Emiohe is part of the people who helped in redefining politics in the state. He has the right to his decision but we have reminded him of what he will be doing to his followers and supporters should he refuse our plea.
“But thankful to God that he has listened to us and we have also promised to bring to the attention of the government those things he said had informed his earlier decision to quit politics.
In a similar vein, another leader of the party in the local government area, Mr Macaulay Shaka-Momodu, has described Emiohe as a strong mobiliser and supporter of the party who could not afford to quit active politics now.
“Like they say, a tree does not make a forest, but there are some trees that can make a forest and Emiohe is one of those trees.
“He is a born politician; he is at home with his people and he is a great mobiliser who we cannot allow to go just like that.
“We need him to play partisan politics because there are many battles ahead,” he said.
A former chairman of the council, Mr Jonathan Aigbiremohen, said Emiohe was responsible for bringing several people into PDP from APC, stressing that the people still needed his support.
“Whatever must have happened in government, you don’t quit the system because you are angry. You need to stay back to correct the perceived abnormality in the system,” he said.
In his response, Emiohe, who commended the party leaders for the visit, corrected the impression that his decision to quit politics was because of the dissolution of the Governing Council of Ambrose Alli University of which he was a member.
He attributed his decision to quit partisan politics to lack of government presence in his area.
The PDP chieftain listed, among others, lack of teachers in two government-owned schools and the deplorable condition of the road in his community.
“I must first of all appreciate their coming because it shows the level of respect they have for me.
“I have listened to them and I have decided that I cannot change things from outside. I need to be inside to be able to make things happen.
“It was never a personal thing but those that affect my people and my community.
“For instance, a school of about 200 students in my community does not have teachers, while another one with same population has only two teachers. We do not also have road.
“All these I have written severally to the relevant authorities without success,” he said.
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