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Skewed structure bane of Nigeria, says Akeredolu

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By Jide Orintunsin, Abuja

The Chairman of the Southwest Governors’ Forum and the Ondo State Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu has called for urgent dissection and appraisal of the workability of the current structure of the Nigerian nation, “if we must attain our quest for a functional nationhood”.

The governor said the current socio-economic crises across the country were products of what he called the skewed structure, which he insisted must be addressed for the country to be stable.

Akeredolu spoke on Tuesday night in Abuja at the 39th annual national scientific conference of the Association of Community Pharmacists of Nigeria (ACPN) where he was honoured as the association’s “Worthy Ambassador”.

He said: “There is no doubt that the country experiences serious socio-economic challenges in virtually every part. While a sizeable chunk of these problems is attributable to the global crises, there are others which call our attention, urgently, to an appraisal of the fundamental issues which define nations.

“It is unprofitable to resort to a facile description of the current upheavals in Nigeria without looking at the factors which militate seriously against our quest for nationhood. We must analyse these issues with a view to determining the workability of the current structure. We must seek solutions to the endemic problems bedeviling the country.

“The over-dependence on oil revenue is retrogressive. Modern economies don’t thrive on monoliths. The country must pay more than passing attention to the issue of diversification.

“In addition, the federating units should, progressively, assume distinctive identities discernible in the economic activities’ peculiar to them and for which they are best suited to undertake. The current structure promotes indolence and kills ingenuity.

“Every part of the country must be encouraged to develop according to its potential. There must be deliberate devolution of responsibilities to the states.

“We must all work towards the enthronement of a national ethos which not only promotes amity among the constituent units but also encourages economic advancement. There must be competition and co-operation among the States.

“Let us allow all states to develop according to their peculiarities. There must be a delibrate devolution of responsibility from the Federal to the states. Some people call it structural adjustment; whatever name you call it, it (restructuring) just must be done. We must make the federating units more powerful. There is no other way: there is no other route to make Nigeria great, if the states will not have more powers than what we have now.”

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