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Why we must restructure Nigeria, by Atiku Abubakar


• Ex-VP says Buhari yet to learn from the past on farmers, herdsmen clash
• Leader wants NNPC sold to end N’Delta crisis

Former Vice President and chieftain of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Atiku Abubakar, yesterday called for the restructuring of the country.

At a public presentation of a book entitled We Are All Biafrans by Chido Onumah in Abuja, Atiku said his call was based on ongoing allegations of marginalisation by some Nigerians.

According to Atiku, the structure of the country is heavily defective as it does not provide the enabling environment for growth and progress among the 36 component states of the federation.


The former vice president who spoke against the backdrop of renewed agitations by militants in the oil-rich Niger Delta and the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) recalled how Nigeria once operated a federal system at independence that allowed the regions to retain their autonomy, raise and retain revenues, promote development, and conduct their affairs as they saw fit, while engaging in healthy competition with others.

He said: “Agitations by many right-thinking Nigerians call for a restructuring and renewal of our federation to make it less centralised, less suffocating and less dictatorial in the affairs of our country’s constituent units and localities.
“As some of you may know, I have for a long time advocated the need to restructure our federation. Our current structure and the practices it has encouraged have been a major impediment to the economic and political development of our country. In short it has not served Nigeria well, and at the risk of reproach it has not served my part of the country, the North, well.
“The call for restructuring is even more relevant today in light of the governance and economic challenges facing us. And the rising tide of agitations, some militant and violent, require a reset in our relationships as a united nation.”

Atiku who chaired the occasion noted: “Some may say that we are saddled with more urgent challenges, including rebuilding our battered economy, creating jobs, fighting corruption and securing our people from terrorism and other forms of serious crimes. I believe, however, that addressing the flaws in our federation will help us address some of those very economic and security challenges facing this country.
“Nigeria must remain a united country. Our potential is enormous. But I also believe that a united country, which I think most Nigerians desire, should never be taken for granted or taken as evidence that Nigerians are content with the current structure of the federation.

“Making that mistake might set us on the path of losing the country we love or, as Chido Onumah puts it, result in our ‘country sleepwalking to disaster.’”

He continued: “Let me quickly acknowledge that no federal system is set for all time. There are always tensions arising from matters relating to the sharing of power, resources and responsibilities. But established democracies have developed peaceful mechanisms for resolving such conflicts among the tiers of government. They recognise that negotiations and compromises are eternal.”

Blaming over-dependence on oil for the rot in the polity, he canvassed the devolution of powers and resources to states and local governments, a tax-centred revenue base, diversified economic activities and productivity in order to enlarge the tax base, an end to the indigene-settler dichotomy, and state police to augment the federal police for the states that so desire that system.

He thereby urged well-meaning Nigerians to refrain from assuming that anyone calling for the restructuring of the federation is working for the breakup of the country.

“An excessively powerful centre does not equate national unity. If anything, it has made our unity more fragile, our government more unstable and our country more unsafe . We must renegotiate our union in order to make it stronger. Greater autonomy, power and resources for states and local authorities will give the federating units greater freedom and flexibility to address local issues, priorities and peculiarities.

“ It will help to unleash our people’s creative energies and spur more development. It will reduce the premium placed on capturing power at the centre. It will help with improving security. It will promote healthy rivalries among the federating units and local authorities. It will help make us richer and stronger as a nation.”

Atiku who fielded questions on the multifaceted problems besetting the polity advised the authorities to use the “carrot and stick “approach to resolve the problems associated with militants in the Niger Delta region.

Recalling how he came up with the master plan for the development of the Niger Delta, he disclosed that he was the brain behind the establishment of the Niger Delta Ministry, wondering why the ministry was sited in Abuja as against the original intent of siting it in the Niger Delta to be able to address the developmental needs of the oil-rich region.

Atiku also enjoined the authorities to privatise the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and set aside no less than $20 billion to address the developmental needs of the Niger Delta region.

Regretting that Nigeria had the misfortune of ending up with “accidental leadership,” he expressed the hope that the country would get the right leadership in due course.

He expressing dissatisfaction with President Muhammadu Buhari over the spate of the farmers-herders clashes in the polity saying: “We have a leader who is not prepared to learn from the past.”

Atiku who recollected how he lost 300 cows to cattle rustlers from neighbouring Cameroun said: “Again, here we come back to the same economic challenges that are facing the country but we also have a leadership that is not prepared to learn from the past and the leadership that is not prepared to lead.”


He, however, gave Buhari a pass mark over his performance in tackling the Boko Haram insurgency, and on the ant-graft campaign just as he maintained that Buhari needs more time to fix the comatose economy.

He insisted that as long as the problems of insecurity in the Niger Delta persist, Nigeria would not be able to tackle the problem of power supply since it remains dependent on the supply of gas.

Recalling the Philippines experience, he insists that the viable solution to the power problem remains the establishment of captive power stations dependent on hydro, coal and other sources of energy supply.

Rest in the link http://m.guardian.ng/news/why-we-must-restructure-nigeria-by-atiku-abubakar/
 

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I think Buhari will die soon and Atiku knows it so he's open about his candidacy. However with a VP I'm not sure what plan the fulsni elite have up their sleeves
 

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No surprise, I don't know what people expected from a Buhari-led Nigeria, but I predicted a total collapse of the Nigerian state if Buhari were to win the elections; let's hope that I'm wrong.
Being right wouldn't necessarily be a tragedy. But I think the best we can get out of it is some reform in our we pick our leaders
 

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APC wins Imo rerun election

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has declared Mr Ben Uwajumogu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) winner of Imo North Senatorial District rerun election held on July 28.

Uwajumogu scored 56,076 votes to defeat Mr Athan Achonu of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who scored 43, 815 votes.

Prof. Arinze Agbogu, the INEC Returning Officer for Imo North Senatorial District, who announced the result in the early hours of Friday, said the outcome was a summation of scores of July 23 and that of July 28 exercise.

Uwajumogu, had scored 48,921 on July 23, while Achonu, of the PDP, scored 40, 142 votes which made INEC to declare the rerun inconclusive.



Agbogu said that available data before him showed that Uwajumogu had majority of lawful votes cast, and therefore returned elected for the Imo North Senatorial District.

Similarly, INEC declared Mr Nkenna Nzeruo of the APC winner of Oru East State Constituency, while Mr Collins Chiji also of APC was declared winner for Isiala Mbano State Constituency.

The two state constituencies’ elections were equally declared inconclusive due to reported cases of violence that marred the exercise in some communities in the two areas on July 23.

Uwajumogu told journalists in Owerri that he was highly elated over the victory, adding “my gratitude goes more to Gov. Rochas Okorocha whose structure helped me to win this senatorial election’’.

http://punchng.com/apc-wins-imo-rerun-election/

Why does APC keep winning in Imo state. Portends serious rigging for upcoming elections
 

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The governor is APC so it wouldn't be that shocking that some lower ticket races reflect that.

My worry is that since Buhari has been in office every single election run has been largely inconclusive. No election in ant state has been straightforward, which does not bode well for 2019.

And then there is the abuse of the legal system by every politician especially APC who if they don't win at the ballot box want to bully their way in. If there is a legitimate case of fraud (which being Nigeria lord knows its possible ) then yes go to court. But if the tally was relatively fair, why tie up the already underfunded court system with a parade of lawyers only wasting everyone's time on nonsense.

This election coming up has all the makings of a violent one :coffee:
thats my point. Imo isn't naturally an apc state which suggest serious rigging. 2019 will be bloody no doubt but I see no gains for apc tho they'll likely change who the president is to some other apc Fulani president. If Buhari runs, Buhari who cries everytime he loses will show the idiots that voted for him how violent he is when he loses.
 

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Buhari Okays Dogara’s Removal, Locks Up National Assembly Complex

http://www.post-nigeria.com/buhari-okays-dogaras-removal-locks-up-national-assembly-complex/


There are strong indications that the Department of State Services, DSS, has received the backing of President Muhammadu Buhari, to carry out full investigations into the N480 billion budget padding, in the House of Representatives.

It was gathered on Saturday, July 30, that security agencies, had already swung into action by scrutinizing documents collected from a former Chairman of the House of Representatives Appropriation Committee, Abdulmumin Jibrin, as part of the investigations into the budget padding.

According to reports, the DSS had sealed the Secretariat of the House of Representative Committee on Appropriation, on Saturday.

The operatives barred the Clerk to the Committee, Dr. Abel Ochigbo, from entering his office.

Although, Ochigbo and other member of staff were in possession of the keys to the Secretariat, they were not allowed access into the office.

The DSS operatives blocked Ochigbo, when he wanted to open the door, and denied him access.

“No, no; you cannot enter there please,” a DSS official said and blocked Ochigbo from gaining entrance into the premises.

The security personnel did not listen to the Clerk’s explanations.

The Clerk later made phone calls and tried to pass his phone over to the security operatives, so that he could speak with someone on the other end of the line, but the man declined to receive the phone.

The closure, marked the latest development in the on-going political and media war between Dogara and Jibrin, over the alleged manipulation of line items and figures in the 2016 Appropriation Bill.

It was further gathered, that the DSS officials stormed the Secretariat, which serves as offices for the 40-member Appropriation Committee and its staff, and immediately placed it under lock and key. The DSS also sealed Jibrin’s office, at Room 105, in the New House of Representatives building.

Investigations showed that Buhari, as part of his commitment to the anti-graft war, was favourably disposed to investigations into the allegations, in spite of his closeness to the Speaker, Dogara.

Jibrin, had in his petitions to the security agencies, accused Dogara, his Deputy, Yusuf Lasun; the House Whip, Alhassan Doguwa; and the Minority Leader, Leo Ogor, of padding the budget.

Sources said Jibrin had submitted “incontrovertible” evidence, linking the four men to the budget padding incident that embarrassed the Federal Government.

Further findings indicated that Jibrin had received the full support of the President and the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami.

It was learnt that Jibrin had met with Malami, where he was assured of the Federal Government’s support for his anti-corruption crusade in the National Assembly.

A top government officer said; “Security agencies have received the backing of the President, to probe the allegation. The President has said that there is no sacred cow in the fight against corruption. You know he is close to Dogara, but he will not stop the security agencies from investigating anybody.”

However, the Presidency has maintained that the President would not interfere with the budget padding allegation in the House.
 

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The SE and ss need to form a block akin to the pdp. Outside of a response to militants violence there is no really power. Alliances are formed without our input or consideration unless we harm the purse strings. Even hijacking pdp as an eastern party may help

As it stands the pdp is weak and being diminished on the national stage
 

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I disagree with the rider at the end of the sentence, but impressed the court has exercised enough independence to render this sort of decision unlike that occurs to day in Nigeria.

Pakistan court's 'hang him in streets' rider to Musharraf death sentence sparks fury


ISLAMABAD (Reuters) - The Pakistan government said on Thursday it was seeking to disbar the leader of a three-judge panel which ruled that the corpse of ex-military ruler Pervez Musharraf should hang for three days if the general dies before his execution.

The special court sentenced Musharraf, 76, to death on Tuesday after finding him guilty of high treason for subverting the constitution in 2007. He took power in a 1999 coup.

The court directed law enforcers to apprehend Musharraf, currently receiving medical treatment in Dubai, to ensure the death sentence is carried out.

But if found dead beforehand, "his corpse (should) be dragged to D-Chowk, Islamabad, Pakistan, and be hanged for three days", it said.

The chowk, or square, is just outside parliament.

Thursday's bizarre announcement came after the government said it had found "gaps and weaknesses" in the original sentence, apparently taking sides in a split between the military and the judiciary, and the general's lawyers said Musharraf planned to appeal.

Legal experts termed the instructions unconstitutional, even if symbolic.

Law Minister Farogh Naseem said the government was seeking to remove the leader of the three-judge panel. The judge, Waqar Ahmad Seth, had violated judicial conduct, he said.

"Our plea is that such a judge has got no authority to be a judge of any high court or the supreme court," he said. "He is unfit."

Escalating the tension with the judiciary, the army spokesman said the court announcement proved his assertion that the original sentence was flawed.

"Today's decision, particularly the wording used in it, is beyond humanity, religion, civilization or any values," he told a news conference.

He said army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa had taken up the issue with Prime Minister Imran Khan.

The original sentence had already shocked the military, which has ruled Pakistan for about half the country's history. The army accused the court of ignoring legal processes and defended Musharraf's patriotism.

Attorney General Anwar Mansoor Khan has said Musharraf wasn't given a fair trial, taking the army line.

Tensions between the military and the judiciary rose after the Supreme Court struck down a three-year extension of service given by the government to army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa.

Musharraf, who was tried and sentenced in absentia, said in Dubai the charges against him were politically motivated.

Musharraf seized power in a coup in 1999 and later ruled as president.

In November 2007, Musharraf suspended the constitution and imposed emergency rule, prompting protests. He resigned in 2008 to avoid the threat of impeachment.

When Nawaz Sharif, whom Musharraf deposed in 1999, was re-elected prime minister in 2013, he initiated a treason trial against Musharraf and in 2014 he was charged with high treason.

"This case was taken up only due to a personal vendetta by some people against me," Musharraf said in a video statement from his hospital bed in Dubai.

Musharraf traveled to Dubai after a travel ban was lifted in 2016 and he has refused to appear before the court, despite multiple orders.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/pakistans-musharraf-calls-death-sentence-052748560.html
 

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Shows the hypocrisy of Buhari. He should be in prison now. Shame on those who allowed him to stand for election. :eek:hno:
Of course. He’s the ultimate breacher of the law. A coup is high treason. But I’m surprised that in a country similar to Egypt in how deeply ingrained the military is in running the country that the judiciary can do this. I wonder how it developed and if nigeria can create a true separation of the various arms of government.
 

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Why France Kidnapped West Africa’s Eco Currency

The…political motive for the Eco move is to ensure that Nigeria is permanently kept out of the currency. As Professor Ibrahim Gambari has always said, France has always defined itself as the main power block in Africa and so has always seen Nigeria’s self-definition as an African power as a threat to its interests.


Last Saturday, France, through the instrumentality of its most faithful poodle in West Africa, Alasane Ouattara, kidnapped the West African currency that was to be launched next year for the 15 countries in the region. In a press conference in Abidjan, Presidents Macron and Ouattara announced that the eight West African countries using the CFA Franc currency would adopt the Eco as their new currency next year. The announcement was done the day the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) was meeting for a final adoption of Eco, also decided for 2020. The French move breaks up the 30-year struggle by ECOWAS to establish a regional currency to promote trade and development. What France has done is that it takes over the responsibility of establishing and even printing the new currency and presents the other countries in the region with a fait accompli. France is also keeping the new currency attached to the Euro and therefore aligning it with its colonial interest, as it has always done with the CFA. This means that the other seven West African countries can only join on conditions established by France. The implication is that Nigeria is essentially kept out of the currency because the country will not accept the conditionalities established by France.

The long delay in establishing the Eco has been caused by the inability of the 15 ECOWAS countries to meet the convergence criteria they set for themselves. These are that the inflation rate of less than 5 per cent is maintained. The budget deficit is not more than 3 per cent of GDP and that each country has enough foreign reserves to cover at least three months of imports. The problem now is that after failing to meet these conditions over the past two decades, the eight countries have now adopted the currency without meeting them. This means economics has been set aside for political reasons. There are three political factors that motivated the French decision to take over the baby that ECOWAS has had great difficulty in delivering.

…France has become very unpopular in the Sahel because of widespread belief that it was pretending to fight the jihadists in public while supporting them in secret. People are saying that with its vast array of drones, planes and satellite cover, how are convoys of hundreds of terrorists able to drive over hundreds of kilometres and attack soldiers without any warning from the French.


The first reason is that over the past five years, a successful campaign has been going on castigating the CFA Franc as the instrument through which France maintains total control over the economic affairs of its colonies – the argument being that economic decolonisation never occurred. The Francophone countries have to keep 50 per cent of their foreign reserves permanently with the French treasury and they cannot carry out international transactions without going through Paris. There were demonstrations that French board members in the West African (French) Central Bank must be removed, which is the reason why France has finally agreed that it will not have direct representatives in the Eco Central Bank. What France is trying to do now is to argue that the “colonial” CFA Franc established is now dead and the Eco is a new currency that is not French controlled. This is the biggest lie of the year.

The second political reason is related to recent developments in the war on terror in the Sahel. It will be recalled that on January 11, 2013, French warplanes attacked jihadist convoys that were advancing on Bamako, Mali’s capital. The jihadists were already in control of two-thirds of Malian territory, having successfully defeated and evicted the Malian army from northern Mali. Initially, the three jihadist groups involved, namely: Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), its offshoot The Movement for the Oneness of Jihad (MUJAO by its French acronym) and Ansar Dine were confident that they would takeover Bamako but the French stopped them. I visited Mali shortly after and France was super popular in the country, with the ordinary people flying French flags in their houses and cars.

In this tenth year of the battle against Boko Haram, in which France is a major player with troops, planes and drones on the ground, understanding the French role in West Africa is very important and my hope is that we have a strong working group following the issues.


Over the past few years, however, France has become very unpopular in the Sahel because of widespread belief that it was pretending to fight the jihadists in public while supporting them in secret. People are saying that with its vast array of drones, planes and satellite cover, how are convoys of hundreds of terrorists able to drive over hundreds of kilometres and attack soldiers without any warning from the French. These attacks have been happening with increasing regularity and devastating effect. President Macron has been very angry that Sahelians are criticising his country, that he ordered the presidents of the five Sahelian countries to report to Pau in southern France to be told off for not convincing their citizens that France is a good friend. A meeting, which was to hold this December, has been postponed to January following the killing of 71 soldiers in Niger by jihadists. France is therefore using the Eco currency launch as a public relations gimmick to rebuild its battered image.



The third political motive for the Eco move is to ensure that Nigeria is permanently kept out of the currency. As Professor Ibrahim Gambari has always said, France has always defined itself as the main power block in Africa and so has always seen Nigeria’s self-definition as an African power as a threat to its interests. It is therefore surprising that Nigeria, which is the main target of this French action, has been quiet about what is going on. Meanwhile, the French are trying to woo Ghana to join the Eco, so as to completely isolate Nigeria. The fact that Nigeria has closed its borders with its three Francophone neighbours also created conditions to push the Francophone countries to join this plot against Nigeria. In this tenth year of the battle against Boko Haram, in which France is a major player with troops, planes and drones on the ground, understanding the French role in West Africa is very important and my hope is that we have a strong working group following the issues.

https://opinion.premiumtimesng.com/...-west-africas-eco-currency-by-jibrin-ibrahim/
 

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i suspect it's a story planted by america or interests against turkey. i dont see the benefit to turkey, or even if they have that kind of reach
 
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