“With the size of a nation like Nigeria, taking into consideration its hardworking youth population, natural vegetation and mineral resources scattered all over the country, States naturally should be self-sustaining and competitive.
It is no longer news; Nigeria is finally on the road to overhauling its awkward socio – political and economic system that has kept Africa’s most populated country in a perpetual cycle of crisis of identity, redundancy and neglect of its decaying infrastructure and a failing economy.
What started like an act of sole defiance by Mr. Nyesom Wike, the governor of River State, on the demands of agency of the Federal government to dominate the fiscal activity of the 36 federating units from its Abuja comfort seat of power has finally squared up with the tortuous battle of multiple agitation by separatists groups that felt neglected and deprived in a nation of multi-ethnic groups and indigenous people that has the capacity to contain all and give everyone an equal ground of participation in nation building but choses to pursue ethnic divisionism made popular by the President Buhari administration.
The adoption of the 17 Southern State governors to support the Rivers State government position on the collection of the Value Added Tax (VAT) by state government, has once again proved that Nigeria can be redeemed without guns and matchets, maiming innocent lives and destroying properties of ordinary citizens as a result of the recalcitrancy of the federal authority to give attention to the people’s demand on negotiating the unity of the country to balance and genuinely represent its federal structure than the dysfunctional constitutional unitary system in practice.
Nigerians have been shouting and crying for this lopsided unitary system that is disguised with the toga of federalism to be made equitable to no avail. At a time when other minorities are beginning to see reasons for the various agitations from people of the South East region. Mr. Nyesom Wike emerged to douse the tension of war drums from the Southwest, Middle Belt and South East without throwing a stone.
A victory from one battle with too many fronts. “Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent change inevitable” and in a multi-ethnic nation like Nigeria, practicing quasi-federalism, such bye laws as the collection of tax for goods and services consumed within the jurisdiction of the state can only be sustained by invoking the powers of the state to maintain the statusquo and that was all Nyesom Wike did to open the eyes of all existing authorities to see the extent of fraud and injustice a section of the country had employed over the years to keep entire nation in a vicious circle of underdevelopment that has fueled, unemployment and administrative laziness of men and women in government to stand up, roll up their sleeves and work for the overall benefit of the nation.
With the size of a nation like Nigeria, taking into consideration its hardworking youth population, natural vegetation and mineral resources scattered all over the country, States naturally should be self-sustaining and competitive.
This is what the proponents of the ‘Restructure Nigeria’ has been agitating for ages and threatening to break away if the handlers of the awkward Nigeria constitution that has served the basis for this injustice and underdevelopment refuses to heed to the call for renegotiation of Nigeria’s acclaimed Unity in Diversity.
Productive southern states cannot continue to suffer under the yoke of glaring discriminatory policies designed to keep the states and the people under perpetual subjugation and underdevelopment while others live as beneficiaries for doing virtually nothing to the economic development of the Union.
Wike has just reignited the argument that ‘States should be able to compete on the basis of innovation, education and productivity. There is no state in Nigeria – whether in the north or in the south – is economically not viable. But the current connotational arrangement is draining them of the needed zest and energy to drive their development because there is always this complacency of going to Abuja to collect the regular Federal government Allocation and Security votes running into billions of tax payers money, in most cases, by states who have vehemently declined every invitation to grow business and develop their region.
Zamfara and entire Northern states including Kogi state has the highest gold deposit in Nigeria. This is in addition to other minerals resources in commercial quantity including iron ore, bitumen, manganese, tantalite all in abundance, not to mention expansive farmlands. Yet the state is riddled with beggars and stark underdevelopment that is so shameful to associate with. Yet every month governors from these states will run down to Abuja with pans in the hand to receive money they never worked for. This is no longer acceptable!
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has started the much anticipated revolution and it’s all a matter of time before the entire country and its handlers will come to reality, that the days of slavey, robbing Peter to pay Paul, the days of administrative laziness, doing nothing and earning from the sweat of hardworking citizens of the country is over.
With other states following suit, in addition to outright ban on open grazing, a menace, that the Presidency had continued to pursue despite Nigeria’s refusal at such archaic and antagonistic policies that is certain to set indigenous people of the land against the invading herdsmen, Nyesom Wike has won the heart of many and more so as he look forward to host the next Southern governors meeting.
This will be the second meeting of entire governors from the Southern region and so much has been achieved through judicious deliberations without bonfires and gun wielding security operatives shooting and arresting innocent young people under trumped up charges of protest. This is a clear indication that Nigeria can be redeemed from its continuous descent into anarchy and self-ruin if both leaders and representatives of the people voted and selected into power would swallow their pride and vain pomposity, pursue people oriented policies and look into the future and come together to address those deficiencies that has swelled the camp of secessionist agitators and various rebel groups under various nomenclature including the baptized ‘bandits.’