God Will Judge Nigeria’s Past leaders Who Misgoverned The Country – PMB

President Muhammadu Buhari, has said that God would judge past leaders who misgoverned the country, adding that most youths from the northern part of the country are either uneducated or school dropouts.

Buhari also said because Nigerian media only do what they like, they refused to highlight the explanations in his recent statement in which he was widely quoted as describing a lot of Nigerian youths as lazy.

The President said this in an interview he had with the Voice of America, Hausa service, in Washington, United States on Tuesday.

When asked about his reported comment on Nigerian youths while in London for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, Buhari said the media only preferred to report what they like instead of concentrating on developmental journalism.

The President said, “You know they say we are between 180 and 200 million people in Nigeria and 60 per cent are the youths below the age of 30.

“In the North for instance, most have not attended school or they abandoned halfway.

“If not because we had favourable rainfall in the past two seasons, most of them have no job, just idling away.

“People like them, even if they go to the South for instance, what they will make will not be enough to even pay their rent let alone feeding, clothing and transport back home.

“That has not been explained enough and you know the media, especially the print, are simply doing whatever they like.

“We had two successful farming seasons, people went to farm and did very well, but no one is talking about that; only insults.

“That is why the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed, had to respond to the letter of insults released by (former President Olusegun) Obasanjo. We spoke about it and I asked him not to respond but he refused and said he would just respond by stating the situation we met the country, where it is now and what has been done in-between and the monies we are getting.”

Buhari restated his position that the Peoples Democratic Party, in its 16 years in power, left debts for the country despite making huge income from oil.

He said there were no good roads or power supply to justify billions of dollars spent, adding that only God would judge the past leaders.

“Recently, I had to come out and state that from 1999 to 2014, anyone who carries out a study here in America or Europe or India will know that we were producing 2.2 million barrels of crude oil daily at a price of at least $100 per barrel.

“In those 16 years of the PDP rule, Nigeria was getting 2.1 million x $100 every day, every week, but when we came on board; the price fell to between $37 and $38 and hanged around $40 and $50.

“I went to the CBN – the governor of CBN is here and asked him how far and he said nothing was left apart from debts.

“I said but this is what the country made? And he said yes, he knew, and I asked him where is the money? All is gone.

“Nigerians know that there were no roads or rail lines, there was no power, despite the billions of dollars spent. Only God will judge this thing,” the President declared.

Buhari insisted that conflicts between farmers and herdsmen did not start now, adding that it was wrong to describe it as clashes between Fulani and other people.

As part of efforts to restore security in parts of the country, Buhari said he had approved the recruitment of additional 6,000 policemen for the country.

He said his directive was that the personnel should be recruited across the 774 local government areas in the country instead of “going to motor parks and markets to just pick people anyhow.”

Buhari also kicked against the establishment of state police as being canvassed by some people including state governors.

MEMORANDUM OF THE STATE OF OSUN ON THE REVIEW OF THE 1999 CONSTITUTION OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA

Preface

This memorandum was initially presented by the State Government of Osun in response to the call by the law-making body for contribution to the amendment of the Nigerian Constitution.

The document emerged after contributions have been made by different stakeholders in the state, in an exercise coordinated by the constitution review committee set up for that purpose, under the leadership of Barrister Gbadegesin Adedeji, a former Attorney General of the state. The committee also had on board brilliant legal minds and foremost federal scholars.

When the previous Federal administration set up a Constitutional Conference in 2014, the State Government also presented this memorandum of the Conference and made copies available to the delegates to the conference. While the conference was ongoing, advertorials containing this memorandum were placed by the state government in two national dailies, The Nation and Daily Independence.

The memorandum is now being made public as our own contribution to the important national debate on the restructuring of Nigeria.

It is our belief at the State Government of Osun that the need and strident call for restructuring the Nigerian Federal system should not be reduced to mere political sloganeering but seen as a serious issue worthy of consideration by all patriots. It must therefore be rich, robust and backed with concrete and pragmatic proposals.

The recommendations in this memorandum are important practical suggestions aimed at giving life to the issue of restructuring, taking it beyond mere voluble political rhetoric and including forums and ways on its implementation.

It is our sincere hope that the public will find it useful as we engage in a serious national discourse for the evolution of a just, humane, federal and democratic African society that will serve the present and future generations.

Thank you.

Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola

State Governor of Osun

 

  1. PREAMBLE

1.1       The Senate Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution made a Public Announcement in the National Dailies, including the Punch Newspaper of Sunday, May 6th 2012, that it has commenced the processes of further amendment to the Provisions of the 1999 Constitution and therefore called on the general Public, Civil Society Organisation, Professional bodies and other interested groups to submit memoranda on the following issues:

  • Devolution of Powers;
  • Creation of more States;
  • Recognition of the Six Geo-Political Zones in the Constitution;
  • Role for Traditional Rulers;
  • Local Government;
  • Taking out the following from the Constitution:
  • Land Use Act;
  • NYSC;
  • Code of Conduct;
  • Fiscal Federalism;
  • Amendment of Provisions relating to Amendment of the Constitution, State Creation and Boundary Adjustment – to remove ambiguities;
  • Immunity Clause;
  • Nigeria Police;
  • Judiciary;
  • Executive;
  • Rotation of Executive Office;
  • Gender and Special Group;
  • Mayoral Status for the Federal Capital Territory Administration;
  • Residency and Indigene Provisions.

1.2       In response to this, the Governor of the State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola, directed that the State of Osun, being one of the Federating States in Nigeria, should contribute immensely to the debate by constituting the State Committee on the Review of the 1999 Constitution to aggregate the views of Osun citizens. The names of the Committee members are hereunder:

  • Chief Barrister G.M. Adedeji Chairman
  • Barrister Adewale Afolabi –Attorney-General  Member

and Commissioner for Justice represented by

Adulrasak Adeoye, SSA to Governor on Legal Matters.

  • Ajibola Basiru Esq – Honourable Commissioner, Member

Regional Integration and Special Duties.

  • Gbenga Awosode Esq Member
  • Chief (Mrs) C.J . Aremu Member
  • Chief (Barrister) Talib Bello Member
  • Prince Akinloye Ajibola Oluseye             Member

Ola Oluwa LG     (Osun West Senatorial District)

  • (Barrister) Ipoola Aderemi Binuyo Member

Ife North LG (Osun East Senatorial District)

  • (Barrister) Adebayo Waseeu Gbola Member

Olorunda LG (Osun Central Senatorial District)

  • Tayo Oyewale Esq Member
  • Olayinka Okedara Esq Member
  • Chief (Mrs.) Joke Olatunde             Member
  • Sanusi Hadizat Nike Member
  • Adesina K.O.             Secretary
  • Demola Yaya Rappoteur

 

1.3       The Terms of Reference of the Committee are as follows:

  • “To call for and receive Memoranda from the citizens of the State of Osun on the various areas of the Constitution as indicated above;

 

  • To organize public hearings on the various aspects of the Constitution;

 

 

  • To aggregate various views emanating from the Memoranda submitted as well as the public hearing on the subject matter;

 

  • To submit the report emanating from the exercise to the Governor as the State of Osun Memoranda to be submitted to the Senate Committee on the review of 1999 Constitution;

 

  • The Committee is given a maximum of (3) weeks from Thursday, 31st May to Tuesday 19th June, 2012 to conclude its assignment and submit to the Senate and House of Representatives Committees on the Review of the Constitution not later than Friday, 22nd June, 2012 which is the expected deadline indicated in the publication.”

1.4       After its inauguration, the Committee conducted a 3-day public hearing having received numerous memoranda and materials with respect to reviewing of the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

1.5       This report, therefore, represents various memoranda, views, agitations, research and publication of various groups, community leaders, individuals, scholars, traditional rulers, Jurists, etcetera in the State of Osun.

  1. DEVOLUTION OF POWER

2.1       The subject matter of Devolution of Powers in Section 4 of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), Second Schedule, Parts (i and ii) generated interesting proposals from prominent individuals and associations in the State of Osun.  Virtually all memoranda submitted are in agreement as regards reduction of powers allocated to the Federal Government in the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

 

 

2.2       Basic facts that can be deduced from these memoranda are summarized thus:

  • Constitutional recognition should be given to geo-political zones/regions.
  • That the geo-political zones or regions should be the Federating Units
  • That the geo-political zones/regions should be created using such parameters as culture, land, nationality and political expediency
  • More powers should be taken away from the centre to the Federating Units.
  • That only matters bordering on the collective interest of the generality of Nigerians like Foreign Affairs, Defence, Currency, among others, should be left with the Central Government.
  • Amendment of the Constitution should include a clause for self-determination.
  • The National Assembly should be bi-camera but election to the House of Representatives should reflect extant Electoral Act incorporating Justice Uwais Panel reports in its entirety.
  • Senators should be on part-time basis and receive sitting allowances only which should be determined by the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission (RAMFAC) while the salary and emoluments of members of the House of Representatives should not be higher than that of the most senior public servant in the employment of the central government.
  • That each Region, when constitutionally recognized, should be allowed to make and have its own Constitution.
  • In view of the above, chapter 1 of the 1999 Constitution should be amended to make the Constitution supreme in areas allocated to the Central Government. However, if our proposal on devolution of power is accepted, then it will affect all other provisions of the 1999 Constitution which is essentially unitary in nature, orientation and philosophy to take care of heterogeneous nature of Nigerian society.
  • In the event of any inconsistency or conflict between the laws of the Geo-political Zones or Regions and that of Central government, it should be resolved by the Central Supreme Court.
  • The right of self determination should be guaranteed by the Constitution.
  • In place of Section 3 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which provides for the 36 States of the Federation, only the Geo-political Zone/ Regions should be listed which political Zones/ Regions have been informally recognized by the people of Nigeria. The only issue to resolve is power and responsibility to be allotted to each zone
  • Section 4 of the Constitution should be preserved with a caveat that chapter V of the Constitution which contains Sections 47 to 89 should reflect the position of the people of the State of Osun that the geo-political zone/region should nominate Senators to Senate of the Central Government.

 

  1. SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT

3.1       A true Federal administration based on parliamentary system of government should be entrenched rather than the existing presidential system because parliamentary system allows for collaboration and will greatly assist in reducing the cost of governance.

3.2       Executive Powers at the federal level should be exercised by a Presidium of six elected Presidents from each of the six regions for a single term of six years with each president heading the government for one year on a rotational basis while each of them will have ministerial responsibilities on the federal matters for the term.  With this arrangement, no region will claim marginalization.

 

  1. CREATION OF MORE STATES

4.1       Rather than creating more states, existing ones should be synergized into regions which will allow them tap each other’s resource and strength for faster growth. This position, we hold, in consonance of our agitation for Geo-political Zone and devolution of power. Nigeria’s development has been partly arrested by the huge resources in maintaining the existing state structure.

  1. RECOGNITION OF SIX GEO-POLITICAL ZONES IN THE CONSTITUTION

5.1       Nigeria is at present a strange federal arrangement of 36 federating units that are largely unviable. Power is over concentrated in the centre and radiates from there to the States, at the pleasure of the Federal Government. Resources allocation formula tilts unjustifiably in favour of the centre, breeding wastes, corruption, ineptitude and under-development of the constituent States.

5.2       The cause of true federalism would be well and truly served if we return to the pre-1966 evolutionary path. That is, a balanced Federal structure which recognizes fully the legitimate claims of all these groups for self determination, and where no single entity among the federating units will be strong or powerful enough to hold the others to ransom, but where each of the federating units is large enough both in terms of size and population as well as of resources, to be viable, self-reliant and dynamic.

5.3       Arising from various different positions and strong argument canvassed for each position in the Memoranda to juxtapose this positions with other views in materials available, we recommend that the new amendment to the Constitution makes provisions to recognize the following Zones as Constituent Units of the Nigerian Federation.

5.3.1    NORTH WEST ZONE  –  (Sokoto, Zamfara, Katsina, Jigawa, Kano and Kaduna States)

5.3.2    NORTH CENTRAL ZONE – (Plateau, Nasarawa, Kwara, Kogi,                       Niger and Benue States)

5.3.3    NORTH EAST ZONE – (Yobe, Bornu, Adamawa, Gombe, Taraba and Bauchi States)

5.3.4    SOUTH WEST ZONE – (Oyo, Ogun. Ondo, Osun, Ekiti and Lagos States)

5.3.5    SOUTH EAST ZONE – (Imo, Enugu, Anambra, Abia and Ebonyi States)

5.3.6    SOUTH SOUTH ZONE – (Cross Rivers, Rivers, Akwa-Ibom, Edo, Delta and Bayelsa States)

5.4       We are of the strong conviction that the present 36 States cannot, properly speaking, be the constituent units of the Nigerian Union as they were not arrived at on the basis of any rational, cultural, linguistic, political or economic parameters but were largely products of whims, caprices and hegemonic designs of privileged past Heads of State or Presidents (as the case may be) who used their position to the advantage of their people.  We therefore hold the position and recommend the adoption of Regional or Zonal Structure. These regional or zonal structures should be accorded Constitutional recognition.  Each Region/Zone should have its own Constitution or be constitutionally empowered to enter into such agreements on administrative, economic and other activities, as may be approved by the Regional Legislatures.

  1. ROLE OF TRADITIONAL RULERS

6.1       In view of the fact that traditional institutions must be respected as the custodian of custom and culture of the people and because of the historical and cultural values bestowed on the traditional institutions which must at all time be protected, the call for Constitutional role for traditional rulers is unnecessary and uncalled for.  This is because the jurisdiction of each traditional ruler is restricted to his Local Government Area or a part thereof.

6.2       However, Nigeria being a multi ethnic, multi cultural country which precludes it from having a unified traditional system, It is therefore, submitted that the Federal Constitution should NOT accord/include any role for the traditional Institution. At best, each Regional Assembly should, in pursuance of its residual power, make such laws as it may deem fit to accord honor and specific responsibility to its traditional institutions.

  1. LOCAL GOVERNMENT

7.1       The creation, administration and control of local Government should be left to the States Houses of Assembly whether geo-political zone/region is recognized or not. Further, local governments should not be a basis for revenue sharing among the federating units.

  1. TAKING OUT THE FOLLOWING FROM THE CONSTITUTION:

8.1       LAND USE ACT– The current Land Use Act which was enshrined in the constitution by its military authors should be repealed, while customary forms of land ownership shall be adopted by each Region/Zone.

8.2       NYSC– National Youth Service Scheme which was established in 1973 had made tremendous positive impact in Nigeria and on our youths in the area of National integration, cultural exposure, social and marriage interaction and of course employment opportunities. However, from memoranda submitted, the general view is that the scheme be retained but to be strongly re-structured so as to bring back the lost glory.   We equally adopt this position and recommend that the security of the Corps members be taken as a paramount consideration by the Government. The non-professional Corps members be allowed to learn a trade or skills during the service year to allow them to be independent and self employed after the programme. In addition, we recommend that the lives of Corps members be insured and be allowed to serve within their Geo-political Zone/Region.

8.3       CODE OF CONDUCT– Just like the Land Use Act and NYSC, the Code of Conduct Bureau established by Section 153 of 1999 Constitution with noble and lofty objectives of checking tendency of Public office holders who abuse their positions or offices. By the evidence and argument of different opinions in the memoranda, we recommend that Code of Conduct be retained in the Constitution.  We propose further that new amendment be made to stipulate what should be the Code of Conduct and retained penalties for non observance/compliance of same.

  1. FISCAL FEDERALISM

9.1       Views on Fiscal Federation are based on Power Devolution agenda. The general opinion is that each geo-political zone should control its resources with certain percentage as may be determined by the Zone to Central Government.  That all manners of taxes, including VAT, shall be the exclusive preserve of the geo-political zone/region except those dealing directly with matters relating to Central Government.

  1. AMENDMENT OF PROVISION RELATING TO AMENDMENT OF THE CONSTITUTION, STATE CREATION AND BOUNDARY ADJUSTMENT – TO REMOVE AMBIGUITIES.

10.1     Recognition of geo-political zone/region will ease ambiguity and difficulties associated with amendment of the constitution, state creation and boundary adjustment as each geo-political zone/region will have its own constitution, to determine the viability of the state and of course negotiate boundary issues with neighboring zone/ region or may be referred to the Central Supreme Court of Nigeria, as the case may be.

10.2     The process of amendment in Section 9 of the 1999 Constitution is cumbersome. We recommend that the National Assembly should have major power of amending the Constitution and leave the residual power to the State Assembly.

  1. IMMUNITY CLAUSE – SECTION 308(1), (2) AND 3 (AS AMENDED)

11.1     The 1999 Constitution exempts certain categories of public officers from prosecution while in office.

11.2     PUBLIC OFFICER AFFECTED:- This section applies to a person holding the office of President or Vice President, Governor or Deputy Governor and the reference in this Section to “period of office” is a reference to period of office the person holding such office is required to perform the functions of the office.

11.3     The view of the people is that Section 308 (1), (2) and (3) should be retained in its present form as contained in the 1999 Constitution (as amended).

11.4     REASON(S):- This section and sub sections have not conferred a wholesale immunity on the persons holding the office but only as at the period they are incumbent of the offices.  The provisions are only related to President, Vice President, Governor and Deputy Governor.  The provisions on immunity do not affect the other officers of the Government and also the Legislative arm of the Government.  The purpose of the provision is that removing the immunity clause could distract the President, Vice President State Governors and their Deputies as opposition parties or mischievous individuals could institute criminal charges against them thereby distracting the due functions of the President, Vice President, Governor or Deputy Governors.

11.5     IMPLEMENTATION:- The present provisions on immunity had been enforced on the holders at their exit from office – such cases included Joshua Dariye (Plateau) Depriye Alamesiagha (Bayelsa) James Ibori (Delta) and Lucky Igbinedion (Edo).

11.6     The opinion of our people is that this section be retained but will wish to comment on the implementation by investigation authorities on the due enforcement of the provisions –

  • The investigations should not wait until the exit of the affected officials.
  • The trial should not be allowed to be prolonged over so many years as in the recent cases.
  • The plea bargain should follow the British type where the guilty shall not only be allowed to forfeit the ill-gotten wealth but should also be made to serve terms of imprisonment as provided under the law.
  1. NIGERIA POLICE – Section 214 (10 and (2), Section 215 (1), (2), (3) and (4)

12.1     The issues agitating the minds of individual are whether the policing system in Nigeria should be under the control of the Central Government or Regional Government?

12.2     The agitation for a State Police is borne out of the present ineffectiveness of the Federal Police to provide Security and other malfeasance perpetrated by the Police in their discharge of their Constitutional duties.

12.3     HIND SIGHT:- The establishment or the provision of a Federal Police is borne out of the fact that in the previous years during the Nigeria Constitutional evolution, there then existed then:

(i)        Local Government Police in the Southern States and

(ii)       Native Authority Police in the North.

12.4     The atrocities perpetrated by these established State Police made the government of that time to disband the entire Local Government Police and the Native Authority Police, although, they were made to be trained by the Nigeria Police.

12.5     LEVEL PLAY GROUND:- There is no friction on the performance of the Police vis-à-vis the State where they do operate – However, by section 215 (4) of the 1999 Constitution where a Commissioner of Police will –

12.5.1  have the audacity to decline to enforce the instruction of the State Governor who is the Chief Security Officer of the State;

12.5.2  Invade the territory of a State Governor as an army of occupation contrary to the wishes of the State Governor;

12.5.3  Performing act and other authorized duties that are inconsistent to the directives of the State Governor and

12.5.4  Several infractions of the Law which are not in conformity with the wishes of the State – as was done in Lagos during the workers protest.

12.6     The opinion of the people of Osun is as follow:

12.6.1  The removal in its entirety the proviso relating to the provisions of section 215 (4) of the 1999 constitution.

12.6.2  That each Region be allowed to establish its own Police Force that will operate and be subject to the directives of the Regional Inspector General of Police in the Region who derives his powers from the Regional authorities.

  1. JUDICIARY:- Section 6,(1) – (5) (a) – (k). Section 230, Section 237 – 284.

13.1     The 1999 Constitution (as amended) vested the judicial powers of the Federation in the Courts Section 6(1), the State Judicial Power (Section 6 (2)) and from Sections 237 – 284 enumerated the composition and the Jurisdiction of each of the Courts.

13.2     The Committee was inundated with memoranda on this particular matter.

13.3     It is recommended that the present arrangement on the court system is unitary and not conducive to genuine federalism.

13.4     It is recommended that each region should have its own appellate system up to the Regional Supreme Court but that appellate jurisdiction of the Federal Court of Appeal and the Federal Supreme Court should relate to matters in the Exclusive powers of the central government and constitutional matters including election petitions.

13.5     ELECTION PETITION TRIBUNALS:- It is observed that the time limitation for determination of election petition in Section 285 of the Constitution and the rigid literalist approach of the constitution has occasioned patent injustice in many cases and as such the provision must be urgently amended.

NATIONAL INDUSTRIAL COURT

13.6     The focus on the jurisdiction of the National Industrial Court has generated a heated and dangerous argument in our legal system owing to the expansive jurisdiction of the court in recently amended 1999 Constitution.

13.7     RECOMMENDATION: The Committee recommends the following:

13.7.1The jurisdiction of the National Industrial Court should be limited to cases arising from wages and lock-outs by Civil Servants, Public Servants but matters concerning political office holders should be handled by State High Court.

13.7.2National Industrial Court does not have sufficient logistics to cope with its present jurisdiction which has become too unwieldy.

13.7.3The National Industrial Court should concentrate on

(i)        Inter or Intra trade union disputes;

(ii)       Trade disputes in industries and companies simpliciter;

(iii)      disputes arising from wages between the Federal Government and its workers.

FEDERAL HIGH COURT

13.8     The Committee recommends the following:

13.8.1Section 251 (1) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) which gives jurisdiction to the Federal High Court on matters in which the Federal Government or any of its agencies is involved should be abolished. This is because it confers undue advantage on the federal Government as a party.  Litigants should be free to initiate actions in any Federal or State High Court.

13.9     All disputes arising from land should be tried by State High Court.

Boundary Commission

13.10   The Committee further recommends that the National Boundary Commission should be abolished.

13.11Inter-State boundary disputes should be handled by the Supreme Court and all cases arising from inter Local Government and inter community land disputes should be handled by the State High Courts. This is because it has been evidently established from boundary disputes cases that those Commissions do not seem to possess courage and force of law to determine the disputes thereby make the disputes last too long while parties often resort to self help, kill and main.

  1. EXECUTIVE:- Section 5 (1) and Section 130 of the 1999 Constitution:-

14.1     The Executive powers of the Federation section 5 (1) shall be vested in the Presidium as earlier indicated.

14.2     The committee is of the view that:

14.2.1  True Federalism is not being practiced by the Executive

14.2.2  The executive is over bloated by appointments provided for in the Constitution and myriads of appointment not provided for in the constitution.

14.2.3  The appointment of support staff for the Executive are too unwieldy with some overlapping responsibilities.

14.3     The committee therefore recommends as follows:

14.3.1  That the appointment of Ministers, Special Advisers and other appointments not provided in the Constitution be pruned down considerably.

14.3.2  The Exclusive Legislative List should relate to matters of National Interest and Concurrent List should be expanded to allow State Governments to have control over matters within their domain.

14.3.3  The Oransanye Committee Report should be implemented without any further delay.

14.3.4  The reports of all commissions of inquiry that were set up in the past and in the very immediate past by the government particularly as they concern those who have in one way or the other truncated the fortunes of this country and which have remained in the custody of the government.  The Committee recommends that a Constitutional provision be made for the implementation or issuance of White Paper on the reports for the purpose of putting into effect the report of such Commission of Enquiry.

  1. GENDER AND SPECIAL GROUP

15.1     Already, government at all levels and individual organizations have been very passionate on the issue of gender and special people.  Ditto with the International donor agencies. Gender and special group should be constitutionally empowered such that the position will not be abused.   The law at present does not prevent any woman from contending with any man in all sphere of life be it education, politics, farming etc.  But the 30% arrangement for women can be prescribed for public offices.

  1. MAYORAL STATUS FOR THE FEDERAL CAPITAL TERRITORY ADMINISTRATION

16.1     A cursory look at the positions in Memoranda gave us conviction that administration in the Federal Capital Territory should be through free and fair electoral process in addition to the current democratically managed six area councils. This is how it is done in America and other countries.

  1. RESIDENCY AND INDIGENE PROVISION

17.1     Experience has shown that for Nigerians to have a sense of belonging and contribute positively to the development of where he/she lives or resides and avoid inferiority complex, the present position that gives equal rights to citizens to hold political position in any part of the country irrespective of where he/she hail from be maintained.  But this dos not mean that he or she shall be entitled to claim to be an indigene or native of that State or community.

  1. THE MILITARY

18.1     There is need for a fundamental restructuring of the Military. There should be a regional based army but with a central control just like in India.

  1. CONCLUSION

19.1     The review of the 1999 Constitution, no doubt, is of great interest to the good people of the State of Osun who have for many years been in the forefront in the struggles and agitations for a balanced federation, in place of a strange Federal structure where power is over centralized, leading to sundry deficiencies.  For unity in diversity, for all-round development, for equal opportunity for all, for a polity where no one is oppressed, and where there is iron-cast guarantee for the fundamental human rights of all citizens, a drastic review of the 1999 Constitution, is our peoples minimum demand or request.

19.2     Finally, we appreciate the National Assembly for throwing the issue of the constitutional amendment to the public for participation and we hope that a dispassionate consideration to the submissions by all concerned.

Buhari, Not I Should Be Arrested For Flouting Court Order – Nnamdi Kanu

Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Mr. Nnamdi Kanu, has said President Muhammadu Buhari and the Director-General of the Department of State Services (DSS), Lawal Daura, should be arrested and detained for disobeying court orders.

Nnamdi Kanu advised those calling for his arrest to direct their anger towards Buhari.

“President Buhari was the one who broke the laws; he disobeyed the direct court order to release me unconditionally, not once, but twice”, he told The Sun.

“Honourable Shuaibu of Wuse magistrate court granted me bail, Buhari did not release me. Justice Ademola granted me unconditional bail, Buhari and his cousin, Lawal Daura, refused to honour that court order.

“They are the ones who should be detained for flagrant disobedience to court orders. I want the northern Arewa irredentists to call for the arrest of Buhari and Daura for flouting court order after court order asking for my release.

“It smacks of hypocrisy and absolute cowardice that people who could not rise up in defence of the law when a court made a judicial pronouncement are now clamouring for my arrest because they believe it is easy to do so.

“Before now, Nnamdi Kanu is Igbo, he is a Biafran and can be arrested and nothing will happen but that would not be anymore, it would no longer happen,” he said.

Nigerian government has approached a court in Abuja to seek the revocation of Kanu’s bail on the grounds that he had violated the conditions under which he was released.

Source: Daily Post

Emir Sanusi To Buhari: Address Rising Cost Of Living

The Emir of Kano, Muhammad Sanusi, has called on the government and traders to address the high cost of consumable items in the country.

Mr. Sanusi made the call in his Sallah message to the people of Kano delivered at his palace shortly after Eid durbar (Hawan Sallah).

The Emir, who lamented the current hardship being experienced by Nigerians, prayed that the bumper harvest being expected this year will bring succour to the masses.

“We are grateful to Almighty Allah for consistent rain. May it bring the end of high cost of food items,” the Emir said.

Emir Sanusi warned people on environmental sanitation which he noted tackled malaria and children cum maternal diseases. He asked Nigerians to be united.

“People should avoid rumour mongering and other activities that may bring disunity among Nigerians. Youths should be responsible citizens and embrace different trades for self reliant, as government cannot provide employment to all.”

Also Kano state governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, called on Muslims to be security conscious during and after the festive period.

A Sallah message signed by Kano State commissioner of information, Muhammad Garba, on behalf of Mr. Ganduje, said though President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has recorded impressive success in the fight against insurgency and other security challenges, there is need for the people to remain extra vigilant and conscious of suspicious movements during and after the festivities.

The governor urged Muslims to emulate the dedication and total submission of Prophet Ibrahim and his son Ismai’l, who were ready to undertake Allah’s command for the sacrifice of the latter, before a ram was brought as a replacement by Angel Jibril on Allah’s command.

While wishing all Muslims happy and peaceful Eid-El-Kabir celebration, Mr. Ganduje urged them to maintain cleanliness as they slaughter and prepare their sacrificial animals. He also called on them to be cautious of what they eat to avoid contracting avoidable diseases.

The statement revealed that, Governor Ganduje reiterated the commitment of his administration to ensure good health for the people and clean environment, demonstrated in the recent employment of over 2, 000 health workers and 1, 000 sanitary inspectors by the state government.

Source: Premium Times

Flooding: Its Time Buhari Takes A Cue From Trump

By Oluwaseun Bisuga 

Many things have been said of President Donald Trump of the US and most of them are rightly so but when it comes to the flooding in Houston and Texas, loquacious Trump deserves some credit.

Even if he is doing it for the camera, he has scored some points in my books.

First he visited Texas and victims of the flood then he seconded Vice President Mike Pence to oversee recovery following the havoc wrecked by Hurricane Harvey.

Hours ago, he donated $1million of his own funds to help victims who are in dire need of clothes, food and shelter. And he is demanding that the Congress approves $5.9billion emergency flood funds.

Now that’s a president who understands that every American life matters.

Even by Trump’s standard that is an enviable achievement. If you ask me, I never thought I would have to ask anyone to take a cue from Trump until this happened.

For Americans, what he has done might not be a big deal but for Nigerians it should be because Benue State is being ravaged by flood and the President does not seem to be tackling it proactively.

For starters, I would understand if President Buhari cannot travel to Makurdi in Benue State like Trump did for two reasons.

First, because of his health. He only just returned from London after a medical vacation and might still be recovering and secondly because he is a Muslim. He is expected to celebrate Eid with his family and friends.

But what is the excuse for not sending Vice President Osinbajo? What is the excuse for not sending one of his ministers or aides?

At this point, Makurdi flooding should be the most important topic on the minds of Nigerian leaders.

We all are sitting pretty in our very dry apartments and relishing the thought of eating and drinking this Sallah while fellow citizens are gasping for breath in Makurdi.

We are sleeping pretty in our duvets and watching the television while there are some citizens do not have electronic appliances anymore due to flood.

They also do not have homes, clothes, food and many more. They’ve lost all what took them many years to build while the people they voted for are killing rams and cows while watching them suffer on television.

This is simply unacceptable. Like Trump, Buhari should immediately demand emergency flood funds and get to work.

Issuing a statement that the President has directed “National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to immediately mobilize personnel and resources to come to the aid of the victims of the flooding” shows that the President does not place a premium on Nigerian lives like he should.

He should not talk the walk, he should walk the walk.

Nigerians need some action here.

The visuals from Makurdi should send some chill down the spine of anyone who have got any human feelings.

If the President wants to earn the respect of Nigerians, he should call on some senior members of his team and order them to report to Makurdi.

Everything doesn’t have to be politicized. In Houston and Texas, we saw how US lawmakers reacted but in Nigeria they are no-show except for a handful that has mentioned it.

The message is that we trivialize Nigerian lives and this has to stop if we want to earn the respect of the outside world.

I think the President should immediately get to work now.

Let’s take a second and think about this. That could have been you trying to navigate through the flood and watching your world nosedive before your eyes.

It could be your family members, business or property in that flood right.

I hope this government gets to work and save Nigerians in that flood.

Taking a cue from African Americans, I say, Nigerian Lives Matter!!!

Oluwaseun Bisuga is journalist, social media analyst and writer

Twitter: @bisuclef

 

Buhari On Benue Flood, Orders Immediate Support For Over 100,000 Victims

President Muhammadu Buhari has spoken on the flood in Benue State that has displaced about 100,000 people, according to official estimates.

In a statement on Friday, presidential spokesperson, Garba Shehu, said Mr. Buhari “has received with great concern reports of the flooding in Benue State, which, according to early estimates, has affected thousands of homes and displaced more than 100,000 persons in 12 local government areas.”

“Consequently, the president has directed the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) to immediately mobilise personnel and resources to come to the aid of the victims of the flooding.

The president is closely monitoring the situation, and will be receiving regular updates on the scale of the disaster, as well as the federal government’s humanitarian response.

“The president extends his sympathies to the government and people of Benue State, and assures that the federal government will make available any assistance needed to enable the state government and the affected communities cope with and surmount the impact of the flooding,” Mr. Shehu said.

Speaking on the flood, Mr. Ortese told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, in Makurdi that places affected included Achusa, Idye, Wurukum Market, Genabe, Industrial Layout, Demekpe, Wadata Market, Katungu, behind the Civil Service Commission, Agboughul-Wadata among others.

“In Achusa, 200 houses were affected with 5,125 persons displaced. In Idye 217 houses were affected while 5,200 persons were displaced.

“Also, behind the Civil Service Commission 200 houses were submerged in flood and 5,777 persons were displaced,” he said.

Benue is not among the states the fedearl government announced would receive N1.6 billion each to mitigate the impact of floods in their state. The directive to give the money to the 16 states was given by the then acting president, Yemi Osinbajo, in July.

Officials in beneficiary states such as Plateau, however, say they are yet to receive the money, which was supposed to be taken from the Ecological Fund and disbursed through the National Emergency Management Agency, NEMA, to the affected states.

Officials in Benue, however, say the state should be included among the beneficiaries due to is experience with flood this year.

Buhari Gives Victorious D’Tigress N1m Each As Team Visits

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday hosted the players and officials of the D’Tigress, the Nigerian women basketball team.

The team recently emerged African champions, the first time in over 10 years.

The president also promised each of the victorious players N1 million while each official of the team will get N500,000.

Details later…

Buhari’s Speech: Human Rights Activist Flays President, Says His Speech Reflects Military Man In Him

As reactions trailed the speech recently delivered by  President Muhammadu Buhari the Director, Ola-Oni Centre for Social and Research, Osogbo,  Comrade Wale Adebisi has posited that the speech showed the military man in the President.

Some Nigerians have earlier criticized the speech, describing it as one that lack substances capable of reassuring the hope of the people of the country.

Comrade Adebisi while joining the set of people that carpeted Mr President over the speech said the President’s speech is an indication of a living military tendency in a democratically elected President.

According to him, “The fact still remains on the speech of Mr President, General Muhammadu Buhari that there is no way you can wash off the spot in the skin of a leper.

“Now, the man, the fact still remains, is a military man and that speech he delivered on Monday showed the military man in him and also quantify the fact that the military in a democracy is an aberration.

“He was talking about crushing terrorism, crushing Boko Haram, already you are in negotiation and you have to respect the rules of negotiation for the remaining numbers of Chibok girls that are still in bondage.

“When you are talking of negotiation, you cannot be talking of crushing and if at all they have another strategy to combat the terrorists, they should have conceived the military tactics, not exposing it or talking it off but then that  still underscore the fact that we are inheriting military that are not well accommodated by the democracy because one, the military we have in Nigeria is an inherited military from the colonialists, it is a military of imperialism.” He added.

Igbo Eviction: Northern Youths May Withdraw Order Today

Barring any last minute change of mind, the Coalition of Northern Youth Groups (CNYG) will today suspend a clause in its Kaduna declaration, otherwise known as ‘quit notice’ issued Nigerians of the Igbo extraction to leave the 19 Northern states by October 1.

A source who is privy to the activities of the coalition told this paper that the Northern youths have concluded plans to announce the suspension of the ‘quit notice’ at an international press conference in Abuja today.

According to the source who preferred not to be mentioned in print, the CNYG’s decision to withdraw the quit notice followed series of meeting with numerous stakeholders.

He said the final decision to withdraw the quit notice was taken since last week at a meeting between the leadership of the coalition and seven prominent Northern elders.

“At the meeting which took place last week Wednesday, the Northern elders persuaded the Arewa youths to withdraw the quit notice for the sake of national interest, in order that the country be kept as one”, the source added.

Recalled that at the height of the tension generated by the quit notice issued the Igbos, the Arewa youths were engaged in series of meetings with eminent stakeholders in the country in frantic moves to prevail on them to rescind their decision.

The stakeholders who invited the coalition for a meeting include eminent Northern traditional rulers, the Northern Governors’ Forum led by Governor Kashim Shettima of Borno State, the Directorate of State Security, the National Peace Committee, the Northern Elders Forum, several Igbo leaders and cultural groups, including Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youths Worldwide and the Eze Ndigbo in all the 19 northern states.

Also, a position paper by the coalition titled, ‘General Assessment and Possibility of Review of the Kaduna Declaration and a letter it wrote to the Vice President exclusively obtained by our correspondent confirmed the decision by the northern youth groups to withdraw the quit notice.

In the position paper, the CNYG said the decision to withdraw the quit notice is tied to a set of demands which it had articulated for the attention of the National Peace Committee, the Northern Governors’ Forum (NGF) and the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) for onward transmission to the presidency.

The conditions attached include the immediate re-arrest of the self-appointed leader of the indigenous people of biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, who breached his bail conditions.

According to the coalition, the strange quit notice, issued on Tuesday, June 6, 2017 in Kaduna, was in response to the breakaway agitation by Igbos under the auspices of IPOB led by Kanu.

The CNYG noted in the paper that they were at different times prevailed upon by stakeholders to reconsider their stance in the interest of national security and unity.

In the position paper, CNYG recalled the four grounds on which it based its decision to issue the ‘Kaduna Declaration as follows: “The Igbo’s arrogant attitude of continuing affront on the peace of Nigeria, spewing hatred and heaping insults on others and expecting everyone else to stoop condescendingly to this brazen affront.

“The incessant threat, insult, violence and open call for war on all other tribes and regions that has become the hallmark of IPOB’s Biafran agitation based on fake and exaggerated claims of marginalization, is, to put it mildly, offensively provocative.

“No reasonable standard allows a people to defer with the universally recognized path of civility and opt for violent campaigns and hate summons on a mere perception of marginalization anywhere in the world.

“At one time or another, other parts of Nigeria have also made similar complains of marginalization but followed it up in civilized democratic manner as against the Igbo violent option”, it said then.

Although the Kaduna State government swiftly reacted to the controversial decision of the Arewa Youths by ordering the arrest of their leaders who made the pronouncement, the order was never effected by the Kaduna State Police Command, a situation that further aggravated exchange of words between some Southern and Northern leaders.

Also, the federal government had initiated various peace moves as championed by the then acting president, Osinbajo, with series of meetings with leaders of thought from the North and the Southeast in order to douse the tension raised by the Kaduna Declaration.

Meanwhile, the letter dated Thursday, August 17, 2017 by the Arewa Youths intimating Osinbajo of their decision to suspend the ‘quit notice’ to Igbos today, which was obtained yesterday was signed by the coalition’s chairman, N.A. Sharrif.

“We have resolved to announce at an open air international press conference on Thursday, August 24, 2017 in Abuja the definite suspension of the relocation clause contained in the Kaduna Declaration”, CYNG told Osinbajo in the letter titled, ‘Update on The Kaduna Declaration and Commending Your Excellency’s Effort at Maintaining National Security and Peace’

The Arewa Youths also demanded that seven conditions must be met as necessary to the definite suspension of the quit notice.

The conditions include to allow the Igbos and support them to hold a referendum to decide their future, either as Nigerians or as biafrans, in view of the fact that the population of the Igbos that supports Biafra is far larger than the few who seem to be against it.

The coalition noted that by virtue of Nigeria being a signatory to the various international conventions that entrench the right of a people to self-determination, it was only proper for Nigerian authorities to reflect that right in the ongoing constitution review so as to end the deception that Nigeria’s unity is non-negotiable.

The CNYG stated: “If for any reason a referendum cannot be held for the moment, we insist the Igbo both in the Southeast and in other parts of Nigeria be made to discard totally any idea of Biafra and to show practical actions to prove that they believe in one Nigeria.

“All southeast political and religious leaders including elected and other office holders should openly denounce Biafra and declare loyalty to one Nigeria by doing away with all symbols and flags of Biafra and replacing them with recognized Nigerian symbols.

“In collaboration with law enforcement agencies, a careful, lawful and purposive search should be conducted of all suspected premises in the North in which IPOB sympathizers might be amassing arms. This is necessary because since the declaration of war by IPOB, there had been cases of interception of caches of arms concealed and smuggled into some parts of northern Nigeria.

“Immediate steps should be taken for the rearrest of Nnamdi Kanu and his appropriate prosecution; total closure of the open drug markets operating in Northern Nigeria and the implementation of the NDDG using the initial channel of distribution, and lastly

“We demand that the federal government comes up with clear laws on hate speech, even if the Igbos leave Nigeria, this law should remain to contain other individuals or groups whose way of agitation is to engage in hate speech capable of disrupting peace and harmony”

Source: Leadership

REVEALED: UK Doctors Yet To Diagnose Buhari’s Ailment

Despite several months of medication and intensive care in the United Kingdom (UK), President Muhammadu Buhari’s doctors are yet to diagnose what the president’s illness is all about.

According to credible source in the presidency that despite series of tests and treatments from renowned medical practitioners both within and outside the UK, nobody has been able to pinpoint what ails the president except that he has completely lost his appetite for food.

The failure of the presidency to tell Nigerians the actual state of health of the president has fueled speculations in the country with many alleging that the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is guilty of what it accused the then ruling party, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) when the late President Umaru Yar’Adua held sway.

But according to our source, “Those accusing the presidency of being economical with the truth on the actual state of health of the president are missing the point because you can only disclose what you know.

“As at today, nobody knows the kind of ailment battling Mr President. Even his doctors in the UK don’t know what is wrong with him. Lots of tests have been done; in fact, they have done everything humanly possible but they still can’t detect what is wrong with him. That is why the doctors have decided to place him under long observation to see if they can diagnose what is wrong with him on the long run.

“For those of us who are close to President Buhari, he can’t stay for a long time without food. He doesn’t have the endurance for long fasting and that is why those referring to him as a religious fanatic are wrong. Here is a man who doesn’t joke with his food but suddenly once he takes a spoon, he throws up. And you know if you don’t eat for a long time, you become weak and emaciated.

“When the condition became critical, they have to devise other means of feeding him, but we’re happy at the level of significant progress he has made in the last couple of weeks”, he said.

He also debunked the claim by some online news media that the president is being treated for acute prostate cancer or battling with Crohn’s disease, a medical condition that could have affected his digestive system.

“From the information we have, every organ of the president is working perfectly. The only problem is his inability to eat well due to loss of appetite. That is why some people are alleging that the president may have been poisoned or under some kind of spiritual attack”, he noted.

Although President Muhammadu Buhari’s first active year in office which was from May 29, 2015, to 2016 was frost with some minor challenges, especially delays associated with appointing his cabinet members, the frustrations and criticism that greeted it left much to be desired.

No sooner had he sorted out some of these issues to settle down to the business of governance came his health challenges.

The first time he took a vacation to undergo medical check-up in London, the United Kingdom was in February 2016.He left the shores of Nigeria for the United Kingdom for a six-day vacation from

February 5 to February 10, 2016. After a formal letter was written to the National Assembly leadership he transferred powers to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

Buhari’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, had explained that the letter to the National Assembly was in compliance with Section 145 (1) of the Nigerian Constitution.

The spokesperson had assured Nigerians of the well-being of the president and the need not to panic over the state of his health.

He had hinged the vacation on the need for the president to take a break from work as he had worked non-stop for eight months and could break down like every other person.

On January 19, 2017, shortly after resolving the leadership crisis in The Gambia, where Yahaya Jammeh was recalcitrant to hand over power to his successor, President Buhari fell ill again and had to leave the country on another vacation.

As usual, he wrote Senate President Bukola Saraki and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara, before bidding Nigeria goodbye to examine his health on January 23, 2017, to be precise.

Nigerians were sympathetic and in fact showed understanding that the president needs to take care of his health issues so that he could function maximally as the nation’s leader.

However, when the 10-day medical leave began to extend to several weeks, rumours began to fly over the actual date of his return, deepening suspicions that his health was far worse than officials were publicly admitting.

Source: Independent Newspaper

Succession Politics And The Limit of Ignorance

By Abiodun KOMOLAFE

Osun West Senatorial bye-election has come and gone, not unexpectedly, with its twists and turns; sounds and bites. Victors have since July 8, 2017 been counting their blessings while losers have also been unrelenting in licking their wounds with threatening affection! On the whole, June 21, 2014 has again happened to the progressive camp in the State of Osun and one can only pray that appropriate lessons from whatever remains of its wacky outcome would not be wasted on the altar of ego and sycophancy. It is also believed that ingrates and renegades who have turned the misfortune brought upon the state by Isiaka Adeleke’s sudden death into a ‘Us’ versus ‘Them’ personality clash will ‘sheathe’ their swords for the good of the party and country.

Except we want to be economical with the truth, what played out on July 8 was the opposition’s way of telling Nigerians that, given the opportunity, it can still use the weapons of rice, money and other instruments of ‘stomach infrastructure’ to spring surprises on soft targets. Unfortunately, the ruling party’s inability to keep its house in order nationally, plus economic reforms that have, for want of a better expression, been struggling to put food on the table of the common man are rubbing off on the states and may affect the party’s fortunes in future elections if concrete steps are not taken to address the situation. All Progressives Congress (APC) needs to wake up from its slumber, cutoff the pretence and carry out clearance operations before it is too late.

Nigeria is in tough times and all eyes can see it. The political turf is heating up as we gradually approach another election year and it is as if those who never wished Muhammadu Buhari and his government well have now had their prayers answered. The economy is bleeding and it seems as if the national government is satisfied with snoring on a mattress overstuffed with excuses as a way out of the socio-economic logjam. In politics, little things count. Taking refuge in short-term measures, even when they are energy-sapping or funds-demanding, go a long way in addressing the nasty tragedies, extant confusions and conceptual impressions that have been threatening the fragility of the egg called Nigeria. Behaving as if 2018 is 1000 years away,or as if 2019 will never come, will not help a ruling party that is already being derided as ‘can do better as an opposition party.’

At a time like this, Osun comes to mind. APC must do all it takes, lawfully, to remain in power so as to prevent a reversal of the gains of the last seven years. Osun cannot withstand a repeat of the disaster of the years eaten by the locust, when our common patrimony was used to cater to the needs of some selfish few. It is common knowledge that all the gratuitous attacks, barefaced lies and harebrained fabrications against the Rauf Aregbesola-led government are mere samples of what to expect in next year’s governorship election. To be honest with ourselves, APC’s defeat in the last bye-election was facilitated from within by the Judas Iscariot who embraced coded languages to give performance a new meaning.The challenge of change, salary quagmire, even pensioners’ palaver played secondary roles.

With regard to 2018, all I see for the progressive in Osun is victory; and Aregbesola’s outstanding performance in office is an indication that the battle has already been won! But this is not to say that there won’t be challenges on the road to this assured victory. In any case, that’s the beauty of democracy! Anything short of that is a recipe for chaos! For instance, while no government has ever done a quarter of what this administration has done for Osun since its creation, it is rather unfortunate that Aregbesola is seen out there more as a ‘salary unpaying’ government than one that has turned the state into ‘construction site’. Sadly, too, while issues surrounding the salary challenge point in the direction of a national crisis, that some ‘food-for-the-stomach’, false democrats are insisting that Osun’s should be treated as a case in isolation is a mystery for students of political history to unravel.

So much has been said about democracy described by Abraham Lincoln as “the government of the people, by the people, and for the people.” But if this system of government thrives in a society characterized by formal equality of rights and privileges, why do Nigerians continue to suffer, irresistibly, from what Pius Adesanmi once referred to as “acute malaria”? When, for instance, KunleOlogundudu accused KayodeFayemi of using state funds to build mansions as well as run a private university, why did the electorate gullibly subscribe to the untruth without raising a finger? Similarly, why has Osun suddenly become the rumour capital of Nigeria and what’s being done to present issues as they are? When has it become a crime to democratically avoid the resurrection of a deadly Wike/Amaechi crisis or the replication of a ‘Tarka-me-I-Daboh-you’ Kwankwanso/Ganduje face-off in Osun? Apart from other laudable programmes undertaken by this administration, have we forgotten its noble contributions to the triumph of no fewer than 50 of our medical students in Ukraine?

More importantly, why have some quarters not appreciated Osun’s innovative means of alleviating the plight of its workers through its salary apportionment approach? With this regime in place, only a section of workers on grade level 12 and above (that is, about 20% of the state’s total workforce) have been receiving 50% of their gross salaries based on an agreement between the government and the labour union. “Outside that, officers on levels 8-10 receive 75 percent of their salaries while officers on levels 7 and below who constitute about 65% of the workforce receive their full pay.” Good to note also that “all workers in the state have received their salaries up to” July 2017 “in line with the agreement the government has with workers.” The fulfillment of its promise to pay the outstanding as soon as the financial fortunes of the state improve can be seen in the judicious disbursement of the second tranche of the Paris Club refunds.

Let’s come to the issue of “the same uniform”, a policy which, in more than a manner of speaking, elicits interesting ideas that should naturally tempt one into scrutinizing some important assumptions. Ignorantly or mischievously, Aregbesola’s traducers have not only forgotten the advantages that attended its implementation, they have also gone a step further to describe it as an ‘it can only happen in Osun’ affair. For the avoidance of doubt, “the same uniform” policy has long been in existence in countries like Australia, Brazil, Cambodia,Chile, China, Indonesia and Malaysia.

If the aforementioned countries are examples too far to cite, what of Ghana and Benin Republic, our next-door neighbours?

May principalities and powers, assigned to rubbish our leaders’ efforts, scatter!

*KOMOLAFE writes in from Ijebu-Jesa, Osun State, NigeriaKOMOLAFE writes in from Ijebu-Jesa, Osun State, Nigeria ([email protected])

Abiodun KOMOLAFE,

020, Okenisa Street,

PO Box 153,

Ijebu-Jesa, Osun State.