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PFN, Dakas task National Assembly on Nigeria’s restructuring

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Omobude


• Reps consider states creation, true federalism, others
• 2021 scales second reading in Senate as lawmakers threaten zero allocation for MDAs

The Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria (PFN) has restated its call for restructuring of Nigeria, insisting that occurrences in parts of the country warrant the Federal Government to consider agitations for a rearrangement of the polity.

National President of PFN, Dr. Felix Omobude, made the assertion after a joint meeting of its National Advisory Council (NAC) and the National Executive Council (NEC) in Lagos, where various issues of concern to the Church and the Nigerian nation were discussed.

Specifically, the PFN, cited the calls from various segments of society, leaders of thought and good-spirited Nigerians for the restructuring of the political, economic and administrative apparatuses of Nigeria.

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“The calls validate the long-standing position of the PFN and its consistent appeal over the years, to the government to pay attention to the calls and activate the necessary mechanism for it. The PFN restates its call for restructuring, which has now become even more urgent, given the increasing agitations from different groups tending towards division rather than unity,” he said.

ALSO, a legal luminary, Professor Dakas C. J Dakas (SAN) admonished the National Assembly to address the agitations for the restructuring of the country.

Dakas, who is Dean, Faculty of Law, University of Jos, spoke during the inauguration of the Special Ad-hoc Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution in Abuja, said it behooved the lawmakers to address restructuring once and for all.

He noted that it was unfortunate that the issue of restructuring had become a catchphrase without a clear sense of what the term really entailed.

He cited devolution of powers, return to regional structure, states creation, derivation formula, fiscal federalism, as some of the issues revolving around the clamour for restructuring in the country that needed to be addressed in the overall interest of the country.

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BESIDES, Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Ahmed Idris Wase, assured that creation of states, state police, true federalism, local government and judicial autonomy would feature in the review of the 1999 Constitution.

Wase, who chairs the House’ Special Ad-hoc committee on the review of the 1999 Constitution stated this during the inauguration of the committee at the National Assembly.

“There has been several attempts to amend the 1999 Constitution, yet the agitations for a much more fundamental amendment has not stopped, because there are critical aspects of our Constitution that touch on our continued existence as one indivisible country and until these areas are resolved, we may continue to have clamours for a new constitution,” he stated.

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IN another development, the 2021 Appropriation Bill scaled second reading in the Senate yesterday, after a heated debate on the N3tr earmarked for debt servicing and the borrowing of over N4tr to finance the budget.

Senate President Ahmad Lawan referred the Bill to the Committee on Appropriations for further legislative action and asked the committee, headed by Barau Jibrin (APC, Kano), to report back in four weeks.

MEANWHILE, the Senate threatened that it would not to approve budgetary votes for ministries, departments and agencies (MDAs), which failed to appear before it to defend their 2021 budget.

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, stated this at the end of the debate on the general principles of the 2021 Appropriation Bill, saying the budget defence would commence on Tuesday, October 20, 2020, adding that the exercise would end in the first week of November.

It also confirmed the nomination of Nasir Isa Kwarra from Nasarawa State for appointment as Chairman, National Population Commission (NPC) and other commissioners for the geopolitical zones of the country.

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