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Respond to calls for restructuring, Soyinka tells N’Assembly

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(Photo by PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP)

Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, has urged the National Assembly to listen to calls for the restructuring of Nigeria, while lamenting the state of corruption in the country.

Soyinka, while speaking in an interview on AIT’s Kakaaki programme, yesterday, urged the National Assembly to take responsibility towards that effect.

He said the lawmakers had the powers and moral authority to respond to the calls if the Presidency is not doing so.

He said: “The Presidency is saying it is not my responsibility. On the other hand, the National Assembly keeps saying it wants the President to take action. When that happens, why doesn’t the National Assembly say ‘fine, we take this as our responsibility and we are obliged to the people who elected us here. “The shout is heard even by the deaf today that this nation must restructure, and if that has to be done through the constitution, we are now going to face this as one of our major tasks.”

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He continued: “If the Presidency is not responding, then the National Assembly has the powers and moral authority to respond to the desire of the populace.”

On why the National Assembly has been reluctant to take up the leadership opportunity, Soyinka said: “Very often, they are struggling for those various committees where I think all the goodies are shared; so they are compromised. But when I speak about this, I’m not speaking about the entirety. But unfortunately, there are those who are purely for their own interest and who make compromises with the Executive simply because they want to fulfil their own personal interest.

“There are so many people who should be in prison if this government had not run out of steam, and so, the system is being manipulated.”

Asked whether the National Assembly, dominated by the All Progressives Congress (APC), was not putting enough pressure on President Muhammadu Buhari, he said the lawmakers had a lot of work to do in their relationship with the President.

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