Lagos — Former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Chief Olabode George yesterday declared that Nigeria's national architecture is under threat, saying citizens now live in uncertainties, fear and in a state of paranoia following the rising insecurity.
He said the only solution to the challenges lies in devolution of power to the states, saying, "The center is too powerful, too suffused with too many responsibilities that must and should be delegated to the states."
He spoke in a lecture titled, 'Nigeria - Foundation, Fundamentals and the Future' delivered at the Third Annual Lecture of Freedom Online in Lagos.
Bode George said "Nigeria is wrapped in mutual suspicion and distrust foisted by extremist characters across the spatial divide perpetrating the terrible seeds of discord, pitting groups against each other, provoking malicious venom everywhere."
He said, "We are drifting into a fissiparous hugeness. The widening of sectarian violence, the loose, callous banditry, the seeming ethnic cleansing, the ravaging of villages, the murderous goon-squad on the highways and the endless eruptions of the Boko-Haram asymmetry warfare are indeed pushing everyone, regardless of one's ancestral space in this country, into paranoia, panic, fear and the grip of virtual uncertainties."
He said devolution of power to states would solve the challenges of nationhood facing the country, noting that when states are in charge, they would be responsible for most of the challenges the centre is contending with.
He further said in a true federation, the constituent states "are largely independent organs, self-governing, self-expressed in economic and territorial identities."
He charged that "We must re-assess and boldly confront what is wrong with the national architecture. We must work together to identify and rectify the variegated ills and the wrongs presently subsisting."
He argued that Nigeria's present architecture is discredited and skewed, imbalanced, and suggested that the restructuring requires that the center must restrict itself to national defense against external aggression, the printing of currency and international diplomacy.
"Let the other powers be devolved to the states like in true federation," he suggested.