The General Overseer of the Redeemed Christian Church of God, Pastor Enoch Adeboye, has said the only way to quell the agitations by several ethnic groups seeking to break away from Nigeria is to restructure the country.
The pastor said this at the 60th Independence Day Celebration Symposium co-organised by the Redeemed Christian Church of God and the Nehemiah Leadership Institute.
While some Igbo groups have called for the creation of Biafra nation, some Yoruba leaders have backed the agitation for a Yoruba Republic.
Speaking at the symposium titled, ‘Where will Nigeria be in 2060?’, Pastor Adeboye advised the Federal Government to give Nigeria a lasting solution to secession agitations and its economic challenges by restructuring the country.
He said the restructuring must be carried out as soon as possible to forestall a breakup of the ethnic components making up Nigeria.
He proposed the adoption of an indigenous system that would be unique to the country or a merge of both the presidential and unicameral systems of government.
He said, “Why can’t we have a system of government that is 100 per cent Nigerian, unique to us? For example, we started on with the British system of government, somewhere along the line, we moved over to the American system of government.
“Can’t we have a combination of both and see whether it could help us solve our problems because in Mathematics, if you want to solve a problem, you try what we call Real Analysis. If it doesn’t work, then you move on to Complex Analysis and see whether that will help you.
“If that fails, you move on to Vector Analysis and so on. I believe that we might want to look at the problems of Nigeria in a slightly different manner.
“Some people feel that all our problems will be over if Nigeria should break up. I think that is trying to solve the problems of Nigeria as if it is a simple equation. The problems of Nigeria will require quite a bit of simultaneous equation and some of them are not going to be linear either – forgive me I am talking as a mathematician.
“Why can’t we have a system of government that will create what I will call the United States of Nigeria? Let me explain: We all know that we must restructure. It is either we restructure or we break. You don’t have to be a prophet to know that one. That is certain.
“Restructure or we break up. Now, we don’t want to break up, God forbid. In restructuring, why don’t we have a Nigerian kind of democracy? At the federal level, why don’t we have a president and a prime minister?
“If we have a president and a prime minister and we share responsibilities between these two so that one is not an appendage to the other. For examples, if the president controls the army and the prime minister controls the police. If the President controls resources likes oil and mining and the prime minister controls finance and inland revenue, taxes, customs, etc. You just divide responsibilities between the two.
“At the state level, you have the governor and the premier. And the same way, you distribute responsibilities between these people in such a manner that one cannot really go without the other. Maybe we might begin to tackle the problems.”
APC may sanction Amosun, Aregbesola, Shekarau, others over parallel congresses
Prominent chieftains of the All Progressives Congress (APC) that promoted parallel congresses in last Saturday’s state congress of the party organised to elect members of the State Working Committees may be sanctioned.
Already, Daily Trust reports that intense pressure is being mounted on Chairman of the national caretaker committee of the and Yobe State governor, Mai Mala Buni, to punish Ibrahim Shekarau (Kano), Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Rochas Okorocha (Imo), Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos), minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed (Kwara) and minister of Niger Delta, Senator Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom) that reportedly organised parallel congresses in their respective states.
Sources in the party told Daily Trust that governors of states where parallel congresses were held had been reaching out to the national caretaker committee to wield the big stick on those who sponsored the exercise.
Parallel congresses were organised in 12 states such as Kano, Lagos, Ogun, Kwara, Osun, Plateau, Niger, Akwa Ibom and Enugu.
The development has further polarised the ruling party ahead of the national convention. Also, contrary to the warning of the party and President Muhammadu Buhari, the camp of Aregbesola has dragged the party to court over the congresses.
A party source said the committee was under pressure to sanction them to serve as deterrent to others and forestall a repeat of the scenario during the forthcoming national convention.
“Governors are pushing that they should be punished but the committee is in a tight corner because the promoters of the parallel congresses are bigwigs that cannot be easily reprimanded,” the source said.
Another source at the party’s secretariat said members of the congress committee who sided with the promoters of the parallel congresses would be sanctioned.
“Yes, pressure is being mounted on the national secretariat on this matter but the first thing that will be done is the sanctioning of members of the congress committee who attended the parallel congresses. They aided it.
“Our constitution is very clear. The leaders of the party in states are governors. Congress committees are supposed to be with the governors, not parallel committees. The members of the Kano committee that went to parallel congress are going to be punished,” a party leader at the national secretariat said.
It was also gathered that the issue would first be presented to the appeal committee of the congress and the Senator Abdullahi Adamu reconciliation committee before it would go to the national caretaker committee for a final decision on the matter.
A chieftain of the party and former presidential candidate, Chief Chekwas Okorie, said the party should match its words with action by applying some disciplinary measures against those who conducted parallel congresses.
Secretary of the APC caretaker committee Senator John James Akpan Udo-Edehe had described the ‘parallel’ congresses as futile activities, saying the party will not hesitate to wield the big stick on perpetrators.
But media aide to Governor Buni, Mamman Mohammed, denied that the governor was under some pressure.
“We are not aware of any pressure. The party under his leadership will meticulously follow due process in the administration of the party,” he said.
Kano State Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has however said moves are on to reconcile with members of the party led by a former governor, Ibrahim Shekarau, who parted ways with his (Ganduje) leadership of the APC in the state.
The governor, according to a statement by Abba Anwar, his chief press secretary, said this on Wednesday before the commencement of the State Executive Council meeting.
The statement said Ganduje noted that “Politics is all about this kind (reconciliation) of development, anyway.”
Recall that former governor of the state, Ibrahim Shekarau, had led a group now called the G-7, comprising of Senator Barau Jibrin (Kano North), four House of Representatives members and a party stalwart, to challenge Ganduje’s leadership of the party.
In Lagos, Mrs. Beatrice Omotayo Tugbobo, who emerged as chairman from the parallel congress conducted by the group affiliated to former governor Akinwunmi Ambode in Lagos, insisted that her group has the real APC members.
Members of the group under the aegis of Akinwunmi Ambode Campaign Organisation (AMCO) stormed the Baptist Academy, Obakoro, venue to conduct the exercise.
About four parallel congresses were conducted in the state.
But Tugbobo, in a statement, admitted that there are factions in Lagos APC and that the exercise was conducted in line with the party’s constitution.
She said, “According to the constitution of APC, you can conduct your congresses whether by consensus or by voting and the agreement from the national headquarters of APC constitutionally is that we hold our congresses in a consensus manner.
“Other factions can be holding their congresses elsewhere, yet we are holding our own here, which is AMCO, the group belonging to former Governor Akinwunmi Ambode.”
In Abeokuta, Ogun State, there was outrage on Wednesday following the arrest of six loyalists of a former governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, over the violent Saturday’s parallel congresses of the party.
Hoodlums had disrupted a parallel congress organised by Amosun’s faction at Ake palace, leading to shootings.
The two major factions battling for the soul of the state’s APC are led by Amosun and Governor Dapo Abiodun.
Ifeanyi Uba seeks court permission to visit Nnamdi Kanu in DSS facility
The senator representing Anambra South, ifeanyi Uba, has sought an order of a Federal High Court, Abuja to visit leader of the prosecribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, at the Department of State Service (DSS) detention.
Uba, who is also the candidate of Young Progressives Party (YPP) in the Nov. 6 Governorship Election, said he filed the application so that an order of the court could be obtained to direct the DSS allow him access to the detainee.
The lawmaker, in a motion on notice with suit marked: FHC/ABJ/CR/383/2015 dated and filed on Oct. 15 by his counsel, Agugoesi Ikem, sought three orders.
He said as a senator from the zone, he took it upon himself to carry out his oversight legislative functions to visit the Kanu at the detention facility to ascertain from him “if he is involved in any way in what is happening in the South East.
“AN ORDER of this Honourable Court granting Leave to Sen. IfeanyiUba to visit thé Defendant, NnamdiKanu, as part of his oversight legislative function.
“AN ORDER of this Honourable court directing the Complainant and/or the Department of State Services(DSS) to allow the said Senator Dr. IfeanyiUba access to their detention facility for purposes of visiting the Defendant, NnamdiKanu.
“AND OTHER ORDERS OR FURTHER ORDERS as the Honourable court may deein fit to make in the circ mstances of the case,” it read.
In the affidavit in support of the motion, Uba said that as a lawmaker from the South East Geopolitical Zone, he was bound by the oath he took to ensure peace and security not only in the region but the entire Nigeria.
It reads in part: “That I state that as a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, it is one of my responsibilities to ensure the promotion of the Constitution of Nigeria and other laws of Nigeria.
“That I know that the Defendant in this matter was arrested and brought into Nigeria by the Department of State Services(DSS) of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and since he was brought into Nigeria, he had been detained at the detention facility of the DSS pending his trial.
“That I know that by the Constitution of Nigeria every citizen, including the Defendant, that is charged with an offence is presumed innocent until the charge is proven.
“That I know that the Defendant was charged with several offence and the DSS had only produced him on one occasion in court.
“That there is an allegation that criminalities are being championed by the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra under the leadership of the detained Defendant; an allegation which has been denied severally; yet the situation continues to worsen.
“That I visited and intend to visit the Defendant in my capacity as a senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and for purposes of attempting to ameliorate and fashion a meeting point or create a discussion table aimed at reducing tension and quelling the agitation and killings in the South East,” Uba said.
However, no date has been fixed to hear the application.
Kogi Govt Approves Mathew Opaluwa As Attah Igala
The Kogi State Executive Council has approved the appointment of Prince Mathew Alhaji Opaluwa as the Attah of Igala Kingdom.
The council made the approval during the 6th meeting held at the Council Hall of the Government House in Lokoja on Monday.
Opaluwa is the ninth of the 16 and the fourth of the six surviving males of the late Chief Opaluwa of the Aju Ameacho ruling dynasty of the Igala kingdom.
The Attah designate started his early education at St Boniface Primary School, Idah in 1975 and proceeded to St Peter’s College, Idah where he obtained his West African School Certificate (WASC), in 1980.
He attended the School of Basic Studies, Ugbokolo in Benue State in 1981 and proceeded to Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria in the same year and obtained a Bachelor’s of Science (B.Sc.) degree in Business Administration in 1986.
He acquired his Master’s (MBA) degree in Business Administration in 1997.
Before his appointment, he had worked at the Independent National Electoral Commission in 1988 as an administrative officer and rose through the ranks to become a deputy director.
He has served in many local government areas of Kogi, Kaduna and the Federal Capital Territory as an electoral officer but while in Katsina State, he was in charge of the Research and Documentation Unit of the electoral body.
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