The secretary general of Yoruba Council of Elders (YCE), Dr Kunle Olajide, has tasked President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure true federalism and national unity.
Olajide told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the president needs to return the nation to the era of revenue generation and not sharing of allocation.
The retired medical practitioner and a traditional title holder in Ibadan land, “I have written a congratulatory letter to the president on his re-election and assured him of YCE’s support for his administration towards achieving a greater Nigeria. In the letter, I told him that his victory carries enormous responsibilities among which were the need to ensure national unity and a revisit of the El-Rufai’s committee report on restructuring. The president has replied the letter, appreciating it and the in-depth suggestions. He assured me that the suggestions will be given adequate cognisance.”
The YCE leader said the nation could achieve rapid growth and development with true federalism which allowed devolution of powers. He stressed that the decisions of the Governor Nasir El-Rufai-led committee on restructuring set up by Buhari’s administration in 2017 was far-reaching, calling on the president to revisit the report.
Olajide said: “We have to gradually move back to the period of generating revenue and not sharing revenue. Each federating unit should be allowed to exploit and explore its resources. They should then pay an agreed percentage to maintain few essential services in the centre such as Defence, Foreign Affairs, Immigration and Custom services.” O
“Today, there are 66 items on the exclusive list. The intervention of the military in 1966 truncated the march to true federalism. So, in the next four years, Buhari should be able to finish the process, foundation and implementation of the El-Rufai’s committee recommendations. I think it is very essential that the report is implemented as a first step to entrench a true federal system of government. The president should ensure that his appointments reflect the diversity of Nigeria and in line with the Federal Character Principle enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution. We must ensure that people think of Nigeria before anything else, irrespective of tribe and religious affiliation. The president must ensure that he bequeaths a legacy of a United Nigeria He must ensure that the people remained the centre of all their decisions, including security of lives and properties.”
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