The United Kingdom and Europe wing of Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, has called on the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari to stop playing politics with rising insecurity in Nigeria especially perpetuated by Boko Haram, ISWAP, bandits, herdsmen and other armed gangs across the country.
The group said President Buhari and the All Progressives Party still had a good chance to make history if security was prioritised and restructuring happened before the 2023 general elections.
Afenifere tasked government to proscribe bandits as terrorist groups as directed by the court, noting that enemies of Nigeria cloak under these groups to subvert peace in the country.
In a statement by the group’s Secretary, Anthony Ajayi, Afenifere asserted that the Federal Government cannot continue to rescind solutions capable of bringing lasting peace and development to Nigeria, adding that nobody will love Nigeria more than Nigerians.
The group pointed out restructuring as panacea to many challenges militating against the Nigeria state.
The statement read, “All over the world, the issues of terrorism pose a very serious security challenge in international relations. This new ideological phenomenon is dreaded around the globe because it is both resilient and lethal and is waged unlawfully against civilians with the intent to achieve political, religious, economic or other objectives.
“Boko Haram is a typical example of extreme terrorism. Their operational dynamics moves from its area of domestic influence, which was traditionally in Northeastern Nigeria to Niger, Chad and Cameroon and vice versa thereby internationalising the activities of the sect. Whether domestic or international, terrorism is a very complex security issue because of its ambiguous nature. Therefore, resilience and preventive security strategies should be put in place to curb the activities of Boko Haram and the intrusion of international terrorism into Nigeria.
“There are factors that led to the agitation for restructuring, salient issues raised and the constitutional basis for restructuring.
“The agitation did not only revolves around resource control, it revolves review of revenue sharing formula, devolution of power, return to regional federal system of government based on six geo-political zones, return to parliamentary system of government, removal of immunity clause from the constitution, creation of state police, role of traditional rulers among others.
“Countries around the world adopt political arrangements that best suit their nature, context and composition. In some cases, this arrangement facilitates a substantial amount of co-operation among the various segments and institutions all in a bid to achieve the desired end of the good life for the citizens.
“More disturbingly is that, there has been a failure of governance in Nigeria at all levels of democratic governance structure mostly due to bad leadership and corruption over the years. In fact, most indicators of under development are still present in the country regardless of its varied geo-political regions. The idea of true or fiscal federalism, resource control and restructuring are aimed at ensuring balanced national development, unity and peaceful co-existence.
“We consider restructuring the country as a matter of urgency to stop people from self defence and groups seeking for Yoruba nation or Biafra nation.”
However, the Afenifere group recommended scrapping of the 1999 constitution and its immediate replacement by the 1963 parliamentary constitution as the only way for Nigeria to remain united, peaceful and prosperous nation.
“The 1963 constitution was the credible update of the 1959 constitution which was the voluntary agreed framework by the founding fathers of Nigeria and was the position of the major ethnic constituents that agreed to form Nigeria.
“The subsequent suspension of the 1963 constitution was the unilateral decision of a group of soldiers without mandate, a situation that was hijacked and perpetuated by the military determined to turn civilians to the slaves and the mindless mass creation of states and local governments that cannot be justified.
“This fraudulent arrangement has been deliberately foisted on the country even further, with the imposition of the fraudulent 1999 constitution that ensured not only the underdevelopment and destruction of every facet of Nigeria but the unfair and criminal transfer of every resource.
“We therefore call on the lawmakers and APC-led Federal Government to seize this golden opportunity in Nigeria now to do needful as history may not be kind to them if the country collapse under their leadership going by the reality of the day across the country,” the statement added.
SaharaReporters, New York