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South-south Wants FG’s Power Reduced

28 Apr 2012

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Akwa Ibom State Governor,  Godswill Akpabio

By  Kunle Aderinokun and Victor Efeizomor 

The South-south geo-political zone has called for a reduction in the powers and operations of the federal government in order to make the centre less attractive and give more room for the government to focus on security.

The six governors from the zone also called for the diversification of the nation’s economy rather than relying almost entirely on revenue from oil production.

They made these calls yesterday in Asaba, the Delta State capital, at the second edition of the South-south Economic Summit convened by the BRACED Commission, an acronym for Bayelsa, Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Cross River, Edo and Delta.

Akwa Ibom State Governor Godswill Akpabio, who spoke on behalf of the governors, said: “The system we have now has a structural defect:  we have too much agencies. The federal government must unbundle the agencies and focus on development.”

He argued: “If the centre is too attractive, we will continue to have the malaise that we have  been having since the past 50 years,” adding that  we must unbundle the federal government and have revenue formula that gives more money to  the states and the local governments. The Federal government must lessen its weight; it must remove itself from what can be done by the state and local government and focus on development.”

Akpabio challenged the federal government to resolve the issue of insecurity in the country, especially the menace of the Boko Haram sect, saying “if there was bombing in London and it was brought to an end; if there was 9/11 in the US and it was brought to an end, we will like to see Boko Haram brought to an end in six months.”

Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, lamented the nation’s electoral system, saying if the electoral processes were transparent, politicians would not force their way into office.

He added that when elective positions become a do- or-die affair, where all manners of fraudulent acts were perpetrated to win elections, it had the tendency to breed crimes and criminals.

“We must resolve to allow the people’s will to prevail; we must revisit the issue of job insecurity, we must put more efforts to create jobs because job insecurity will lead to other forms of insecurity,” he said.

The National Security Adviser, General Owoye Azazi (rtd), described security as good governance and public safety, pointing out that investment could only thrive in a safe environment.
Azazi blamed the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) partly for the security challenges the country is facing at present because of the party’s zoning policy.

Azazi, who spoke on the theme “Conversations on Terrorism and Securing the Gulf of Guinea”, said PDP unwittingly created the security problem being faced today from the onset by saying that “Mr. A can rule, but Mr. B cannot rule.”

He said the issue of zoning heated up the polity and engendered the air of security threats facing Nigeria today.

Disclosing that PDP members were not usually comfortable with his frank opinion on the issue, Azazi said unless those fundamental political issues were addressed, it would be difficult to get to the root of the security challenges.

Boko Haram, according to him, was not a religious crisis, but an economic problem.
He therefore advised that to alleviate the problem, there was the need for economic empowerment and human capital development.

Co-ordinating Minister of the Economy and Finance Minister, Dr.  Ngozi Okonjo- Iweala, who painted a gloomy picture of the global economy and measures the international communities were putting in place to tackle economic downturn said the global recession had its effects on  developing countries like Nigeria.

She stressed that Nigerian economy needs to be diversified rather than relying more on revenue from oil.

Minister of agriculture, Mr. Akinwunmi  Adesina, disclosed that the federal government has launched a transformation programme to  transform the agricultural sector .
He added that the government has also concluded plans to build 13 large-scale rice milling plant in the South-south zone. 

This, amongst others, was necessary, he said, because the $1 billion Nigeria spent on rice yearly could not be sustained.

Tags: Featured, News, Nigeria, Godswill Akpabio

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  • it is impossible for the Centeral powers to be reduced because if the its powers are reduced and the states have more powers that the Central it becomes a confederate state.
    Secondly, the diversication issues is now a common word used by every government since 1999, and till noting has been done to diversify the economy of Nigeria, leading to the over dependence of Nigerian economy on Oil...not forgetting that before oil was founded the main stay of the nigerian economy was agriculture(Groundnut, COcoa etc)...what happen to those are sector...
    GEJ please brace up to your Job....May God be with you

    From: Kachiz

    Posted: 2 years ago

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  • The same thing i said to one group that calls itself middle belt something, i am now saying to the south south ; good morning! Do you people remember one Emeka Odumdgwu Ojukwu? You are now awake from a deep slumber occasioned by sleeping pills given to you by the north. Good morning once again.

    From: Austin udowelle

    Posted: 2 years ago

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  • THESE ARE GOVERNORS THAT HAVE LOVE FOR THEIR PEOPLE AND ARE WORKING, DOING GOOD WORKS.THEY UNDERSTAND THAT AMASSING WEALTH FOR ONES POCKET IS NO LONGER A LEGACY TO BE LEFT BEHIND.IT IS ONLY A GOVERNOR OR AN INDIVIDUAL WHO HAS SOLD HIS SOUL TO DEVIL WOULD FOR POWER COULD BE DAFT TO THE PLIGHT OF HIS PEOPLE. ONLY FINDING HAPPINESS IN THE SUFFERING OF HIS PEOPLE WHILE HE LOOT THE TREASURY OF THE STATE. WE KNOW SUCH A GOVERNOR IN THE SOUTH EAST. WE ARE ONLY CONSOLED WITH HOPE AND WITH THE FACT THAT A DAY OF JUDGEMENT AWAITS.OF COURSE WHEN A GOVERNOR LOOTS THE STATE TREASURY AND REFUSED TO BETTER THE LIVES OF HIS PEOPLE,HE IS ONLY SHOWING HOW DEEP HE HATE HIS GENERATION.EVEN IF HE DIES HIS GENERATION WILL GET THE HATRED OF THE PEOPLE.

    From: FRANK

    Posted: 2 years ago

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  • It seems that we may still have along time to contend with the problem of Boko Haram in Nigeria. It is disappointing to note that the National Security Adviser, Gen Azazi holds that Boko Haram is an economic problem. It is no wonder why the security agencies have found it so difficult to fight these terrorists. Boko Haram may not be a religious problem in the sense that it is not set up or directed by the religion, but certainly, it is not an economic problem. Boko Haram is a phenomenon bred out of religious fundamentalism.

    A bit of history of what is happening with this type of fundamentalist groups around the world can give an insight into how to fight the security problem. What would Azazi say about the Bali bombing of 2002, Bali bombing of 2005 and the Jakarta bombing of 2009 by Jama'a al Islamiya all in Indonesia? What would he say about the fundamentalist terrorist attacks in different Arab countries? Why did they not succeed in Malaysia during the tenure of Dr. Mahathir Mohamad as the Prime Minister? This fundamentalists, whether Islamic or whatever else, have got a mission and not a grievance. When people have a mission, they want to accomplish it. On the contrally, when people have a grievance, you can discuss, you can dissuade and you can placate them.

    To change somebody’s mission, you have to change the mind-set. When the mission is religious, history has shown that it has not always been easy to change the mind-set. They have the funds, whether earned or sponsored, to buy arms, ammunition, materials for bombs and cars to destroy lives and property. These funds can be used by their sponsors to empower people and thereby fight economic problems.

    Whatever tactics you want to apply, you will not be able to dialogue with this people to solve their problem. The only way to solve their problem is to assist them to accomplish their mission. This, I believe, Gen Azazi or no Nigerian would want to do. To solve Nigeria's security problem should be to fight terrorism, learning some lesson from history, both past and present. With Gen Azazis reasoning it will take a long time to win the war against Boko Haram

    From: Vincent

    Posted: 2 years ago

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  • Governor Akpabio, Azazi and Oshiomole are saying the fact. The only problem is our senate,house of reps and presidency who do not see any problem with Nigeria the way it is now. i know they they will regret when they come down from where they are now. The masses are really suffering. That is my message and this is at times, the cause of insecurity. God please help us.

    From: OKON E

    Posted: 2 years ago

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