Ado ekiti—A legal icon, Chief Afe Babalola, SAN, has absolved President Muhammadu Buhari of blame in the killings and insurgency in the country saying the lopsided Unitary system introduced by the Military in 1966, was responsible for the killings and Boko Haram insurgency.
Babalola, who spoke yesterday, after being honoured by the National Youth Council of Nigeria, NYCN, at a ceremony in ABUAD campus in Ado Ekiti, said the military coup of 1966 ushered in a lopsided unitary system in the country, abrogated the regional system and foisted a warped country on the citizenry.
He said this while being conferred with the Sir Ahmadu Bello Platinum Award as ‘The Icon of Greater Nigeria’ and ‘Garkuwan Matasan Arewa Najeriya’ by the NYCN.
Babalola, who is the founder, Afe Babalola University, Ado Ekiti, ABUAD, said: “The essence of government is to guarantee the security of lives and property of the people. President Buhari is not to blame for this insecurity but the military.
He said: “Before the military took over in 1966, Nigeria was operating the regional system with each region growing and developing at its own pace. These regions were closer to the people. Killings or insurgency were alien to our culture then. Nigerians loved one another, though they were divided politically.
“I want to say that if those regions were allowed then, the country would have had a nation or nations that are well developed today.
“Many pensioners have died having been owed several years of pension arrears. Even those in the service are owed seven or eight months salary arrears, so just like I said earlier, our leaders have turned us into beggars.”
On the vision of his university, which was to build the youth into reliable future leaders, he said: “there are many rich people in Nigeria who can establish this kind of university with the vision to bring quality education as well as, moral and cultural values to the doorstep of Nigerians.
“If we have this kind of university in each of the six geopolitical zones or in every state, Nigeria will change for better.
“Go to the North and propagate the ideals which my university stands for, Nigeria must be united at all cost for us to make headway and overcome all our challenges.”
In his remarks, leader of the group, Mr. Steven Bidemi said the honour was in recognition of Babalola’s contributions to humanity and Nigeria’s unity.
Bidemi said: “At a time when youths are facing relegation from the scheme of things, Babalola continued to exhibit youth friendly vision which gave us a renewed hope as leaders of tomorrow. Chief Babalola is a symbol of a true Nigeria where unity, love, integrity compassion and brotherhood take a seat at the high table.