Advocates for Restructuring: Onaiyekan, Afenifere, and Others Address Hardship

Cardinal John Onaiyekan and the pan-Yoruba socio-political organization, Afenifere, have joined voices in support of restructuring as a solution to the challenges facing Nigeria. They highlighted concerns about the current constitution, describing it as filled with inconsistencies and contradictions.

Cardinal Onaiyekan emphasized the urgent need for constitutional reform, pointing out that the existing document fails to effectively address the role of religion in national progress. He noted that the constitution lacks a clear framework for governance and religious affairs, leading to confusion and inefficiencies within the political system.

Advocating for decentralization of power, Onaiyekan stressed the importance of granting more autonomy to states. This, he believes, would enable more efficient governance and decision-making at the local level.

These sentiments were expressed during a policy dialogue on new governance structures for Nigeria organized by the Abuja School of Social and Political Thought.

Dr. Akin Fapohunda, a representative of Afenifere, also highlighted the need for restructuring, pointing out that Nigeria has yet to define a clear process for this change. He proposed that with restructuring, each region would be empowered to pursue significant development independently, rather than relying solely on resources from the nation’s capital.

Speaking on integrity in nation-building, Catholic priest Fr. George Ehusani emphasized that leadership integrity is crucial for national stability and prosperity. He warned against the dangers of leadership debauchery and elite idiocy, stating that these factors can lead to the downfall of any nation, regardless of its political structure.

Uche Onyeagucha echoed the calls for restructuring, emphasizing that it should not be limited to constitutional amendments but should also include a reduction of powers at the center. He highlighted the wealth potential of each state, suggesting that many states have untapped resources beyond oil that could drive their development.

In summary, these voices are calling for a thorough restructuring of Nigeria’s governance system, including decentralization of power, clearer frameworks for governance and religious affairs, and a focus on leadership integrity. They believe that such changes are essential for the nation’s progress and prosperity.

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