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Adesina, Nigeria and the money problem


Niara. PHOTO: Getty Images

Niara. PHOTO: Getty Images

Sir: In his column titled “Nigeria and the money problem” in The Guardian, Monday, July 25, 2016, Debo Adesina attacked the current dishonest relationship between the Federal Government and the state governments, structure wise. According to Debo Adesina, “It is not the revenue formula but the form of the supposed federal relationship. And no amount of money made or shared under the current dishonest relationship form will engender any meaningful development for Nigeria.”

Debo Adesina should know that Britain, our former colonial master is a unitary system of government, yet it started industrial revolution and it has a diversified economy. Most of the European countries are unitary states and yet they have industrialised economy. Nigeria has two major problems: Nigeria and the money problem. And Nigeria and the education problem. Putting money into good use or putting money into good work is our biggest problem. We don’t know how. Also putting education into use or into work is another biggest problem for us. We don’t know how.

I agree with Debo Adesina that “Local government is supposed to be an autonomous structure for people’s participation in governance at the local level but the state governors have never allowed this autonomy.” We should start the restructuring with the state-local relationship. Let us start from the bottom. Let us start with the local government autonomy. After restructuring state-local relationship, we can move to restructure federal-state relationship. The restructuring is about ownership and control of natural resources. In this restructuring, both federal-state and state-local relationships, “accountability would be guaranteed by the direct participation of the people in their own resources generation and governance.” People first!

In another of his article titled “Carter to Buhari: Leadership in times of crisis” in The Guardian, Monday, August 8, 2016, Debo Adesina fumed that “The hunger in the land at the moment, a real and present danger, should be seen as the equivalent of war against which he (the president) cannot deploy second-rate guns.” and Debo Adesina added, “And in fighting the war, the guns being deployed in ideas and personnel seem BB, not AA!” what prevents the governors and local government chairmen from deploying AA guns in pipe borne treated water, sanitation, agriculture, manufacturing, just to mention a few.

Is the “fraudulent structure”? Blaming fraudulent structure is a lame excuse. Our problem is the economic system (government ownership of natural resources). Britain is a unitary system government and no government ownership of natural resources and it is doing well. United States of America is a federal system of government and no government ownership of natural resources and it is doing well. Blame government ownership of natural resources in Nigeria!

Omohakpor Enaye. Oleh, Delta State

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