By Emma Amaize
WARRI â€” FIRST civilian governor of Bayelsa State, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, declared at Patani in Delta State, weekend, that militan-cy was dead and no longer fashionable as far as theÂ liberation of the Ijaw ethnic nationality and Niger-Delta was concerned.
Also, former Minister of Culture and Tourism, Alabo Tonye Graham-Douglas, said fears of marginalisation, domination in equities and even armed struggles for emancipation and survival would attain lesser attention, proportion and significance, â€œif we consider a political structure such as the old regional system or a confederal outfit with a weaker centre and rotational presidency amongst the six geo-political zones.
Both leaders spoke in Patani at a reception by the people of Kabowei Kingdom in honour of Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) National President, Dr. Chris Ekiyor, Tompolo and other ex-militant leaders.
Honour for ex-militants
Meanwhile, the Ijaw ethnic nationality will soon roll out drums to celebrate and honour ex-militant leaders, including High Chief Government Ekpemupolo, alias Tompolo, and others, who, through armed struggle, brought the conditions of the Niger-Delta to the front burner.
Alamieyeseigha and Graham-Douglas said the plans were in the pipeline and that at the appropriate time, the freedom fighters would be summoned by the Ijaw nation for recognition.
According to Alamieyesei-gha, â€œthe face of warfare in Ijawland has changed and it is now goodbye to military warfare as it is no longer in vogue.â€ He pointed out that the approach to the multifa-rious problems of the region had automatically changed in like manner.
He said it was no longer a battle of weapons but of intellect and wisdom and underscored the need for the people to elect only credible people to represent them in positions of authority.
Graham-Douglas, who decried the politicisation and manipulations of the presidentâ€™s ill-health by some persons said, â€œit has now become necessary for the youth and the nation as a whole, to re-examine the type of political associations and nature of the constitution that will best suit us as Nigerians.â€
His words: â€œThe colonial masters introduced at our independence a parliamen-tary system, which establis-hed definite government and recognised functio-nal opposition. It was a system where accountability, rectitude and honour were never compromised.
â€œAs against that, the presidential system that was subsequently introduced has been conducted in a manner of winner-takes-all, which also concentrates too much power in the centre and the state administrators.â€
He said the presidential system has condoned sceptical electoral system, regulatory mechanisms of Nigeria’s social infrastructures that have not adequately supported nation building.
He added that it had become more desirable to call for a national conference for all Nigerians to re-examine and come up with an appropriate political arrangement that will continue to preserve the unity of the federation.