By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
Former Vice President and Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, presidential aspirant, Atiku Abubakar has described the current composition of the second schedule of Nigeria’s constitution as not development driven.
Atiku made this declaration while speaking with journalists on the sidelines of the 10th anniversary symposium of late Sen. Abraham Adesanya at the Muson Centre, Lagos on Wednesday.
Speaking on his advocacy for a proper restructuring of Nigeria, the former Vice President noted that his approach towards achieving the restructuring agenda will be to review the contents of the Exclusive, Concurrent and Residual lists.
According to him: “I have had people come to me to ask how I intend to achieve the restructuring agenda in six months and my answer to them all is that the process is not a rocket science.
“A serious-minded government that knows how to listen and build consensus can restructure Nigeria for the benefit of all and this I undertake to do when I become the president. Some politicians will tell you it is a daunting task but the reality is that they are not really sincere and committed to ensuring its actualization. They play lots of politics with it and when agitations box them to a corner, they setup smokescreen committees.
“It’s all about the willpower which many will agree I possess in abundance.
“Indeed the federal government can voluntarily withdraw from most of the items listed in the exclusive lists of our constitution. I believe that the benefits accruing from these first steps will help us as we move towards the changes that require amendments to our constitution.
“The major task is recomposing the second schedule which does not encourage development and when you enjoy a cordial relationship with the National Assembly and see it as an independent partner in progress rather than as a competitor, you can achieve great things,” he said.
The anniversary was attended by former President, Olusegun Obasanjo; former Head of State and Chairman of the occasion, General Abdulsalami Abubakar; former Governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel; former Secretary General of the Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyaoku; Dr (Mrs) Doyinsola Abiola, former Minister of State for Defence and daughter of late Abraham Adesanya, amongst many other dignitaries.