Former President of Nigerian Bar Association, NBA, Dr. Olisa Agbakoba, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari, to quickly give priority to the national question and resolve them urgently, noting that Nigeria would not settle or move forward without solving the issue of disorder rocking parts of the country.
Agbakoba, who spoke to journalists, yesterday in Lagos, said Nigeria is in utter chaos and disorder, adding that the disease of disorder has eaten deep into the nation’s national fabric, and has badly damaged the national psyche of the Nigerian people.
The legal luminary said this has brought about absence for love of country, suggesting that President Buhari must urgently work out a framework to reverse disorder and instill discipline.
He averred that the the 1914 Amalgamation failed, which has resulted to long years of national disorder and disharmony that has impeded economic development and political stability.
His words: “The most critical pillars of this nation are the political arrangements and agreements that bind Nigerians in one nation. We have not lived in peace and harmony. Nigeria is a fractured and divided nation. The Amalgamation agreement of 1914 failed. The colonial agreements in the shape of orders in council promulgated by the English crown failed us. The post-colonial constitutions and their military counterparts all failed.
“The result has been long years of national disorder and disharmony that has impeded economic development and political stability. This is a challenge that President Buhari must engage.”
On the way forward, Dr. Agbakoba, who hailed Buhari for effectively tackling the Boko Haram crisis, however, said “with oil production at about 900, 000 Barrel Per Day, it’s a danger signal that shows that the President needs to adopt a more flexible approach to the Niger Delta crisis which is becoming seemingly out of control. This also extends to pro-Biafra agitators.
“The President can build a new national order by recognizing our diversity and managing it in an inclusive process that would lead to an agreed constitution by all Nigerians. The president must refrain from calling yet another wasteful conference.
“All that is needed is a comprehensive review of the reports of the national conferences. It will be a very difficult but not impossible task.
“The key in arriving at a new constitution is in isolating what Nigerians will agree to immediately. I believe Nigerians will accept the need for a balanced federation. We must strive for a balanced federation and decentralisation of powers from federal to state government.
He added that “the centre is too strong and can pass responsibility out of the 98 items of power, under its exclusive control, to the states. This will balance up the federation.
“It is recommended that a graduated process of constitutional amendments should be introduced to replace failed holistic attempts to write new constitutions in one fell swoop. Creating a new national order will be very difficult but not an impossible task. The effect of a national order will be stabilization and national rebirth.”