By Ndubuisi Emedosi
Nigeria has crawled enough, and there is need as a country to be on a fast but consistent lane of growth. No matter how the present administration under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari tries to shy away from restructuring, the fact still remains that at best, Nigeria needs to be restructured or risk been disintegrated.
Due to the way and manner the country is been governed currently under the ruling party (APC), it has triggered agitations almost from all quarters for a restructured system for a better and peaceful coexistence as one indivisible entity.
The push for restructuring is perceived by the opponents of it as a strategy to favour some quarters against others. Contrarily, it is a move that will put Nigeria as a whole on the path of growth.
Restructuring is defined thus: ”Bringing about a drastic or fundamental internal change that alters the relationships between different components or elements of an organization or system”.
To restructure a system means to change the way it is organized. This has become the latest buzz word in the political landscape with the proponent and opponent political actors pushing their ideas on the subject matter.
A pilot voice for restructuring in today’s Nigeria politics is the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar (Turaki Adamawa), who also is a presidential aspirant of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He has revealed four steps to restructuring Nigeria. He is of the view that the current system is not sustainable, and the country won’t develop until it is restructured.
According to him; We should, first, dispassionately and painstakingly re-visit our 36-state structure vis-a-vis the idea of overly dominant federal government.
Second, we should devolve power from the center to the federating units: many of the items in the Exclusive List should be devolved to the states or any other agreed federating units.
Third, that devolution of powers must include an end to federal intrusion in local government administration. The so-called States/Local Governments joint account has virtually absolved state governments of responsibilities to fund local governments while they virtually confiscate the funds allocated by the federal government to the local government. To have the federal government create local governments and directly fund them makes nonsense of the word ‘local’.
Fourth, we must sit down, discuss, and agree on the nature of our fiscal federalism, on how to share our resources. He advocates for the control of rents by the federating units from which they are derived while the federal government retains it’s powers to levy taxes. That will make us all productive again and our federating units to engage in healthy rivalries and competition, which will only result in more progress.
There is no doubt that the structure of our federation and governance constitute an impediment to our economic development, political stability and social harmony. Changing them would help to place our country on a path to phenomenal and unhindered development.
The seemingly prepared Atiku Abubakar more so, sounded emphatically when he said that he would restructure the country in six months if elected the Commander-in-chief!.
When asked how he intend doing so within the said short space of time, Turaki went further to say that it can be done simply by devolving more powers to the federating units with the accompanying resources, or greater control by the federating units of the resources in their areas.
Atiku Abubakar has made it clear that he is on a mission to put Nigeria on the path of growth, and set it free from the path of serial failure foisted on it by the ruling party.