By Luminous Jannamike
ABUJA – President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government, on Sunday, came under fire for repudiating the restructuring of the country.
He spoke weekend during the launch of Kudirat Abiola Sabon Gari, Zaria Peace Foundation, which took place at Ahmadu Bello University Hotels, Zaria.
Represented by the Executive Secretary, Revenue Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission, Alhaji Mohammed Bello Shehu, Buhari foreclosed Nigeria’s restructuring when said there was nothing to restructure.
“And again, those who are discussing restructuring, my question is, what are you going to restructure? If you ask many Nigerians what they are going to restructure, you will find out that they have nothing to talk about.
“Some of them have not even studied the 1999 Constitution. The 1999 Constitution is almost 70 to 80 per cent 1979 Constitution.
But CAN has taken a swipe at the President, saying his remarks bore smacks of autocracy.
The Vice Chairman of CAN, Northern region, Reverend John Hayab, cautioned the President against taking the rest of the country for granted.
He said, “This same Buhari-led government had in the past set up a committee on restructuring and which came up with a report. If the same government is now saying that there is nothing to restructure, then it is telling Nigerians never to take anything it will say in the future seriously. Indeed, it is sad to hear that our elected leaders see us, citizens, as people who have no right.
“When a democratically elected president consider the yearning of people as the yearning of the unelected, then you can simply say we are in an ‘autocratic democracy’. By that, we are nominal democrats; but in action, autocratic. In a true democracy, the citizens’ voice is key. Their voices must should be heard and respected.
“Calling for a National Conference is never a coup or does not mean handing over power to the unelected but instead it is about given more space for citizens’ voices in governance.
“Nigerians are disappointed with the military posture that is being displayed in a democratic dispensation. Those in power should be careful with the foundation they are laying which will never help our democracy to grow strong.”