Be violent in your spirits against injustice, Adedayo counsels Nigerians
A former Special Adviser on Media to the governor of Oyo State and former governor of Enugu State, Dr. Festus Adedayo, has said that since it is obvious that government would not concede to a restructuring of Nigeria as being advocated, Nigerians should be violent in their spirits against the unjust system currently being run in the country.
He made this known on Friday while delivering this year’s Synod Lecture of the Anglican Church, Ibadan Diocese, held at St. David’s Anglican Church, Ijokodo, on Friday.
The lecture, entitled Restructuring Nigeria: Possibilities and Challenges, had in attendance The Most Rev. Joseph Akinfenwa, Bishop of Ibadan Anglican Diocese and a cross-section of clergymen who had gathered for this year’s Synod.
According to Adedayo, Nigerians have fasted and prayed to God enough to change the unjust system of government which has kept them down socially, economically and politically, but the time had come for them to physically manifest it by rejecting the unjust system and damn those who are behind it.
“It is obvious that President Muhammadu Buhari, being one of the offspring of those who designed this unitarist-federalist constitution that is affecting Nigeria’s progress, will never allow a restructuring of the country. The bible tells us that the Kingdom of God suffereth violence and the violent takes it by force. While I am not advocating that you should take up armaments against the system, you should however be violent in your spirits against this political and economic system of injustice in Nigeria,” he said.
In the lecture, Dr. Adedayo traced the history of restructuring and agitations by Nigerians for the righting of systemic wrongs from the anti-colonial struggle for independence, to the Clifford Constitution of 1922, the 1947 Richards Constitution, Macpherson Constitution of 1951, Oliver Lyttelton Constitution of 1954, down to the 1960 Independence and 1963 Republican constitutions.
“Having faced decades of dislocation of their socio-political progress which reflects in gross poverty in the midst of apparent plenty, massive governmental corruption which has become the most visible face of the country within and outside its shores, rising cost of living, decline in educational standard and high level of insecurity, among a plethora of other existential challenges, it is only logical that Nigerians would be desirous of reinventing their country. Late novelist, Chinua Achebe, in his book, There was a country, must have been one of those who unwittingly provoked this nostalgia when, in the book, he painted a Nigeria that was once a prosperous land,” he said.
“Agitations for restructuring of Nigeria are based on the notion that Nigeria, as it is currently constituted, is not working. The consensus of opinion is that, re-federalising Nigeria will entail not only returning Nigeria to the 1960 and 1963 constitutions where each of the three regions was autonomous and there was a healthy rivalry among them, restructuring is also perceived as the process of redemption of the historical mistakes of the 1966 military coup,” he submitted.
Adedayo said that, whichever of the types of restructuring that Nigerians may adopt, “it is obvious that the country cannot continue like this. The time to do something that will reform the current status quo is now.”