DUKE: Without The NASS, President Can Implement Parts Of Confab Report
CHIEF Orok Duke, a former deputy speaker in the Cross River State House of Assembly, who was also a member of the national conference, has advised the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the Opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) — to study the Confab report with a view to ensuring full implementation of the document after the 2015 general elections.
Insisting that honouring the outcome of the national conference would be in the interest of all Nigerians, Duke, however, expressed doubts that politicians would be interested in implementing the Confab report.
He said: “If you talk of the Confab issues, there were some sections that will require the next National Assembly to implement, and there are some sections that the president ought to have implemented immediately. So, if the president does not go ahead to implement part of it, it will not encourage incoming National Assembly to even touch it.
“Some of the issues have been co-opted and included in the present constitutional amendment. But we had said that all the associations of sports should be centralized, so that everything should be run from Abuja and it was unanimously accepted. It was also accepted that they should make available equal funding to over 30 sports and not to concentrate on football. The minister of Sports was mandated to go ahead and ensure that all headquarters of sports should be in the FCT.
“For instance, Table Tennis was taken to Lagos; shooting to Enugu; and, with this, you cannot even develop sports, apart from those people from that catchment area.
“But the Minister of Sports is not even doing anything. Look at what happened in Commonwealth Games, which was preceded by World Cup and everybody in Nigeria moved to Brazil. So, we could not prepare for Commonwealth games and we went and disgraced ourselves.
“Another area the president has executive fiat is in the area of making payment into a consolidated revenue account of the country. Being a monolithic economy, the constitution says all monies accruing to Nigeria should be paid into a consolidated account, to be redistributed among the states and federal government at the end of every month.
“Any country that does not have steel and power cannot become a manufacturing country. We do have steel and to clean up and pass through all the processes, it is cheaper to import than to produce locally. We are not planning to do anything about Ajaokuta; the whole thing is based on deceit.
“So, the bottom line is that we have series of reports from the Confab. There are some that will definitely need the National Assembly’s approval and there some that could be implemented through executive order or fiat. What we thought the president would have done is to go ahead and implement those ones that he can implement. For instance, the sports administration thing is an area the president can go ahead and implement. There are so many things that do not need the approval of the National Assembly, which we thought the president should have started the implement. He has not done so but he keeps on saying the present National Assembly are opposed to the resolution.
“So, if those who are opposed to some of the resolutions end up in the National Assembly, that will mean us having wasted all our efforts and money and not achieving anything.
“We have situation were Islam, as a religion, is mentioned 88 times, traditional religion 10 times and no mention of Christianity as a region and we complained; yet, nothing has been done.
So, the president should start the implementation of some of the reports and it will encourage the incoming National Assembly. If the man who masterminded the whole does not begin somewhere, thing how would it encourage others? What happens to the report if Jonathan does not comer back as President? This is the frustration we are facing.
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