Akeredolu, Mamora, others seek nation’s restructuring
Ajimobi praises self, Fayose urges robust democracy
Eminent Nigerians have attributed the prevalent problems against the nation’s unity to the 1914 amalgamation, lamenting that the former British Governor General, Sir Fredrick Lord Lugard, fused different ethnic nationalities into one country.
They argued that for the country to move forward, it has to be restructured along economic and political lines to the extent that the different groups would have a sense of belonging in an equitable country.
A former House of Representatives member, Wale Okediran, said this yesterday in Akure at the 2018 Democracy Day Celebration with the theme: Nigerian Unity: The Challenges, Prospects And The Way Forward.
Okediran, who was guest lecturer and past President, Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA), noted that the three major ethnic groups in the country were forcefully merged into one without putting their differences into consideration.
He said: “The British brought these groups together for administrative convenience not minding their absolute differences in culture, principles, allegiances, religion and politics.
“Today, Nigeria’s political problems as argued by Major Ademoyega (1981:3) sprang from the carefree manner in which the British took over, administered, milked and abandoned the government and people of Nigeria.”
He stressed that NGOs, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and traditional rulers have critical roles to play in the nation’s democracy and unity, saying the latter were unifying and symbolic to their people.
At the event, chaired by Olorunnibe Mamora, he, said: “Justice, fairness and equity would engender the people’s trust in the system and minimise the ethnic antagonisms that have tended to undermine reconciliation in Nigeria.
Speaking, Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, said the Democracy Day celebration afforded Nigerians the opportunity to access their journey from pre-independence, post-independence and the fourth Republic, the new era of democracy.
He stressed that it was significant because there were a lot of lessons to learn saying: “We have passed through a lot. We are reminded of the sacrifices made by men and women many of who are dead.
Akeredolu added that the clamour for restructuring did not just begin, but favoured restructuring rather than break up of the country, insisting: “There is no way Nigeria could be divided. I will fight on for one Nigeria.”
In a related development, Oyo State governor, Abiola Ajimobi, has given his administration a pass mark in delivering dividends of democracy to the state in the last seven years.
A statement by his Special Adviser, Communication and Strategy, Bolaji Tunji, noted that his administration has done well, particularly in infrastructure development, security, education, agriculture and healthcare.
Meanwhile, Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, has urged Nigerians to ensure that they strengthen the nation’s democratic rule.
He made the remarks while congratulating Nigerians and particularly Ekiti people for witnessing and celebrating another Democracy Day.
In a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Idowu Adelusi, he said God had helped him to strengthen democracy in Ekiti State through his administration’s strict adherence to the rule of law.