Although the Federal Government is yet to fully adopt the various strident calls for restructuring of Nigeria to allow overall development, there is a general feeling that the process will eventually occur. Many suggestions have been proffered on areas of restructuring, but there are some priority areas and issues due for restructuring. In your own view, in/on which area, sector or issue should restructuring begin, to boost development in this country?
* Security, illegal small arms in circulation, heartless Fulani herdsmen, dehumanising poverty, infrastructural decay, etc, in this order are my candid priority sequences especially with 2019 elections fast approaching. We must beware of small arms in the hands of jobless youths, for posterity sake. A stitch in time saves nine. God bless our Nigeria.
– Mr. Apeji Onesi, Lagos State
* Restructuring should start from reducing federal functions to only seven: defence, home affairs, foreign affairs, foreign trade, currency, customs, and immigration. The rest functions should go to the states and LGAS which are nearest to the Nigerian people. There should be community, council, state and federal police. Police should change to Nigeria police service not Nigeria police force. There should be 2 more states, 1 each from the South South and South east to balance the 19 states structure in the north or reduce to 24 state structure: 4 from each geopolitical zone + FCT. There should be fiscal federalism to allow for healthy competition as in the 60s etc. God bless Nigeria.
– Mr. Odey Ochicha, Leadership Specialist, Abuja
* Restructuring should begin by returning Nigeria to her former structure, the regions or the modern six zones. Government should set up machinery for establishing capital cities for these zones. That is the only way for now.
– Mr. Shaul Menachem, Director, Community of Judaism Nigeria, Awo-Omamma, Oru East, Imo State
* In this system of government we have a big powerful central government which controls virtually all the affairs of the states. There is need for the restructuring of the states to boost their revenue generation. Each state should generate power, with change in policy to allow each state use their natural resources effectively. The principles of powering sharing should be restructured to stimulate good governance and development.
– Mr. Michael Adedotun Oke, Founder, Michael Adedotun Oke Foundation, Federal Capital Territory, Abuja
* Restructuring should be systemic and comprehensive even if as a process we want it to be gradual. What is important is the comprehensive document and framework and not necessarily where it starts.
– Dr. Kole Shettima, Africa Country Director, MacArthur Foundation, Abuja
* We must first of all restructure our minds on looting of the national treasury meant for development. We are due for restructuring but every group must be carried along to avoid marginalisation in the future. I am against the issue of State Police because some states cannot pay their workers’ salaries.
– Mr. Gordon Chika Nnorom, Public Commentator, Umukabia, Abia State
* Economic and educational restructuring and strengthening of all levels of leadership can be a good start; beyond the clamour for political/regional restructuring only.
– Ms Nkeiruka Abanna, Lagos State
* I think restructuring should start with making government at the Centre a lot less attractive; so that only those with true love for the country can serve. Additionally, I think we should get fresh vibrant minds to serve the country; the recent news that at least 24 states have passed the ‘Not Too Young to Run’ bill is truly gratifying. Nigeria needs restructuring!!
– Mr. E. Iheanyi Chukwudi, B.A.R., Apo, Abuja
* Restructuring should definitely start from the federal government that has failed to practise Federalism. What we have now is a mess we plunged into since 1966. The power of the Federal Government is just too much. If we have to go back to having regions…then so be it.
– Mr. Adewunmi Temitope, Agroshowroom, Osun State
* Our elders, leaders, parents, various caregivers, clerics or religious leaders, social media, relevant academic authorities and others must all step up to save Nigeria from irreversible moral collapse that is currently ravaging our system. Electricity, agricultural processing and storage, kidnappings, need urgent policing. Security operatives must be adequately deployed to prevent any type of violence.
– Miss Apeji Patience Eneyeme, Badagry, Lagos State
* Restructuring should start from the Federal Government, which has taken everything for itself. Fifty per cent of the national income taken by the federal government should go to the States; the Local Government should get 30 per cent, while the federal government should take 20 per cent. Restructuring should give more power to the States.
– Hon. Babale Maiungwa, U/Romi, Kaduna
* Restructuring should start with new revenue sharing formula i.e. Federal Government 47 per cen; States 28.5 per cent, and Local Governments 24.5 per cent. This will go a long way in making state police work. Solid minerals and prisons should be in concurrent list. There should be clear devolution of power to the states before 2019 elections. Nigeria can be great again.
– Mr. Aliyu Saminaka, Abuja
* Restructuring should start from the minds of Nigerians. Our problem is that we do not obey our laws, are not patriotic and are highly ethnocentric. So even with restructuring it would be difficult for us to correct lapses. All the restructuring in the world without restructuring the way we think and do things will only make us end up like the nation of South Sudan; free but yet in bondage.
– Mr. Buga Dunj, Jos, Plateau State
* Restructuring is a must but has to be gradual; the idea is to return to practice of true federalism in order to empower federating units to be productive and competitive. Let the constitutional responsibilities of the tiers of governments be reversed to that of 1963, so that more revenue will go to states to invest in roads, agric, mining and all the exclusive responsibilities the federal government has fraudulently cornered. With this, states can be weaned of their over-dependence on federal allocation.
– Mr. Anonymous, Lagos State
* Restructuring should start from Abuja such that the city ceases to be the haven of run-away politicians who see it as unsafe hideout. If Abuja is less enticing, the people will always benefit at the state and local government level because the politicians can rarely hide from their electors at such levels of government. Thus, power can be brought closer to the people.
– Mr. Oluwapelumi Oyeniyi, Osogbo, Osun State
* Let Nigeria go back to the six strong regions and let each region harness and leverage on their resources and comparative advantages. Also, make the centre unattractive to attract only those committed to sincere service.
– Mr. Olumuyiwa Olorunsomo, Lagos State
Top tip: Start from Federal Govt
Second: Go back to 6 regions
Third: Make the States stronger
Radical tip: Reduce States to 24!
Total no of respondents: 16
Highest location: Lagos & Abuja (5 each)
Next Week: What’s the Current Biggest Threat to Nigeria’s Devt?
Although Nigeria is facing different challenges to her development process, some challenges pose greater threats to her unity and security than others, including herdsmen killings, Boko Haram insurgency, corruption, mounting poverty, inequality, unemployment, rising cost of living, and ethnic/religious conflicts. To you, which of these factors pose the greatest challenge to Nigeria’s development process and how can it be tackled successfully?
Please make your response direct, short and simple, and state your full name, title, organisation, and location. Responses should be sent between today (February 22 & Monday, February 26) to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, AND firstname.lastname@example.org. Respondents can also send a short text message to 08023117639 and/or 08188361766 and/or 08114495306. Collated responses will be published on Thursday, March 1