This Day (Lagos)

Nigeria: The Patriots Urges Jonathan to Change Leadership Style

The Patriots, a group of eminent Nigerians, Thursday urged President Goodluck Jonathan to change his leadership style to reduce tension in the country arising from his approach to governance.

The group, led by a foremost constitutional lawyer, Professor Ben Nwabueze, said at a news conference in Lagos that Jonathan should change his style of leadership by reconstructing his cabinet to achieve his transformation agenda for the country.

Other members of the group are Chief Felix Ibru, Gen. Alani Akinrinade (rtd), Sir Olaniwu Ajayi, Chief Philip Asiodu, Mrs. Bola Kuforiji-Olubi, Chief Chris Okoye, Chief Solomon Asemota, Senator Ben Obi, Mr. Michael Orabator and Chief Ayo Adebanjo.

The Patriots also deplored the lack of bite in the anti-graft war, noting that where a president is determined and forward looking, noticeable changes are feasible within weeks.

Nwabueze, who addressed the press on behalf of the group, said: "There is a great unease in Nigeria today. Mr. President needs the best people available to enable him to carry out successfully the onerous historical assignment set out in this statement.

"He will need to reconstruct his government immediately and appoint a competent, energetic, selfless, patriotic team which will assist him in initiating the peaceful but far-reaching revolution involved."

Condemning the Jonathan administration for failing to sanction indicted corrupt persons, the group blamed the president for the rise in corruption and for his "failure to punish appropriately and promptly, the few persons in high positions found guilty of corruption following due process of prosecution."

Also lamenting the gradual descent of Nigeria into what it termed a failed state, the group called for a national conference where some of the problems affecting the nation would be addressed as a people.

"The initiation of the process for convening a national conference for producing a people's constitution for the Federal Republic of Nigeria whose source of authority, as the supreme law of the land, is the people, acting in a national conference and referendum, otherwise called a People's Constitution," it said.

The group called on Jonathan to ensure that his administration embraced respect for the rule of law, efficient and prompt administration of justice, predictability, objectivity and consistency in government measures and zero tolerance for corruption.

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