Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna state has stated that time is ripe to restructure the country in a bid to meet the aspirations of the Nigerian public.
According to him, apart from guaranteeing an equitable distribution of resources, restructuring to bring about true federalism will firestorm the country into sustainable development.
The governor revisited the 2018 recommendations of the APC committee on restructuring, noting there was a need to reorganise the country’s constitutional framework in order to give states more control over certain resources.
The focus of the APC committee, which was set up in 2017 and chaired by el-Rufai, was to establish the party’s position on restructuring in line with ensuring that all Nigerians benefit from true federalism.
Under the proposed restructured framework, el-Rufai explained that states would have more control over the police, oil and gas resources, minerals, correctional facilities, stamp duties, registration of business names, among others.
Speaking at a public lecture to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Arewa House, held in Kaduna on Saturday, the governor said: “I am not aware of any significant constituency that is against the idea that states should exercise consequential powers, assume more responsibilities and control resources to enable them deliver better outcomes for those they govern. This will empower state governments to cease passing the buck to the president and the federal government when most of the problems our citizens face daily as a nation are, and can be solved by improved and focused governance at the states’ levels,” he said.
“It is time to make this sort of well-defined restructuring work, for the benefit of the peoples of this country.
“The report of our APC true federalism committee puts in one place the recommendations, and the legislative amendments to give life to a restructured polity. I therefore call on our federal legislators and the national assembly ad hoc committee on constitutional review to take advantage of our report and initiate the constitutional and legislative amendments in either a piece-meal or comprehensive manner without further delay.
“We, therefore, have no excuse not to seize this moment and do the heavy lifting for our country and our people. It is in our hands to make the structures, laws and constitutional arrangements in our country conducive to modern governance that will ensure our nation thrives in the 21st century.”
Meanwhile, a group called the Nassiriya Organisation, has stated that the Governor el-Rufai, is the best candidate to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023.
According to the group, based on el-Rufai’s track records of achievements, he should become the next president of the country.
However, according to Garkuwa Babuga, who is the national leader of the organisation and zonal vice chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC), the governor has refused to contest in 2023.
El-Rufai had previously said he had no interest in the presidential seat and would not contest because the next president should be a southerner, as Nigerian politics is based on rotation.
In response to this, Babuga, said the group headed to a high court in a bid to compel el-Rufai to contest the election.
“Many people are yearning for the el-Rufai presidency. I don’t have to overblow the trumpet, you all have seen his developmental strides in the FCT and in Kaduna state. He is the best person for the villa in 2023,” Babuga told newsmen.
He added, “Let’s continue to be loyal and support President Buhari to complete his tenure. But el-Rufai as president and successor to Buhari will further unite Nigeria.
“We are appealing to our elders in the North, please forget party differences, we should join forces and rally round el-Rufai so that he contest and win the presidency.
“Although he did not answer our call, we have gone to court so as to compel El-Rufai to vie for the number one seat in Nigeria.
“The next sitting on the matter is on the 2nd of November, 2020. We have sought the legal services of Barrister El-Zubair. We will all be in the court.”
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