By Samuel Adedeji Adeleye
True Federalism is the most viable option to the Corporate Existence of Nigeria. Since the military has destroyed the ”True Federalism” enjoyed from Independence till 1966, the economic power and its accompanying levers including political and critical security offshoot have been unevenly exercised resulting in “Self-Help” by individuals given birth to various groups that now wield power in Transportation, Security, Economy and Political contraptions of Nigeria.
Stone Age, is when “might is right” and every man a law to himself. How can anybody explain the viability of a central government that overlords all resources to itself without unlocking the potentials of her State components that makes up the Federal entity.
It is counterproductive for Federal Government to collect all revenue from the States and on monthly basis redistributes same back to the states. Consider the “time and energy” to collect and again redistribute as against devolution of power in other clime. People seek spiritual deliverance forgetting that they should focus on asking for deliverance from the deadly strangulation of the center.
Somebody likened Nigerian to the Arabian folklore of ‘’genii’’ trapped in a bottle where you are unable to express your potential ties under a unitary Federalism which results to coerced unity. The slogan of being the “giant of Africa” is a misplaced promotional slogan, so long as we refused to restructure, we remain in a “cocked bottle” of the central government.
The so-called central government is sitting in a local government. It demands as little as “local intelligence” to know that a father of 36 children cannot do as well as a man with only 5 or 6 children as represented in the geo-political zones of Nigeria. Let it be said now and again that, we have been incarcerated in a federal system that refused to allow individual state or region bring out the fullest of possibilities from our citizens. Hence the Stone Age Nigeria.
We shall continue to seek opportunities to make demands for “Devolution of Power” (Courtesy. Dr. Tunji Braithwaite) to the states and autonomy for local administration without which we shall continue to suffer in the hands of federalist leaders who are reluctant to listen to popular wishes of the people to restructure Nigeria economically and politically.
We have heard people refer to Nigeria as an “asylum” where people score goals into their own net. The insecurity, breakdown of law and order in every nook and crannies of the nation is as a result of a ”Father” unable to cater for too many children at every given time of beck and call and the unending needs and demands of these numerous children.
In order to be where we should be as a nation which we are yet to be, is to allow each zone to develop competitively simultenously and thereby meet at the ‘’center of peace and progress’’ in the nearest future. A welfare state ideology comes to our rescue that is the Nigerian dream of majority of our citizens.
According to P.S.O Fortune Ebie in his book.the BRUTAL primordial arrest of her development by her very own people.
We are calling on all true sons of Nigeria to rise and cast off the shackles of coreless values that have held us bound from the quagmire of stagnation and retrogress.
Our psychology, mentality, philosophy behavior and habit are queer if not unique as a nation. Ours is a funny society with nearly half of our population possessing a sheepish mentality, and not only this, most of us are materialists, ingrates, iniquitous and corrupt sycophants.
Those who say they will live and die for Nigeria are very few and remain unrewarded and improvised. Those who say I will live for and with Nigeria have milked her dry, stolen us blind and have become stinking rich.
An unbiased critical self-appraisal clearly shows that the both Lord Luggard (1926) and Dee Lee (2011) with 85 years spanning their respective opinion may have been very kind in their assessment of us. Both are right in all material details and we should shamefully accept same.
Now in 2014, the year of our centenary celebration of Nigeria, can we say that we are not worse than the opinion express by Luggard and others? How can we truthfully say otherwise when the followership and it’s leadership are afflicted with collective hallucination and in their illusions of grandeur with capacity of self-deception and fantasies, imaging the greatness of Nigeria by parroting empty, meaningless, useless, valueless, phrases which do not help in our development- Africa’s most populous nation, biggest economy in Africa, 6th biggest oil producing country in the world, giant of Africa, Super Eagles, Flying Elephants, becoming one of the 20 leading economies by 2020 i.e 2020 syndrome.
We are still unable to draw a line between the observer of principles and absolutism, overwhelmed with indiscipline and disregard for law and order, rules and regulations. It is a place where a culture of impunity has led some people being above the law and thus anything goes anything is possible in Nigeria without any reaction from the’’ too-willing-to-be-led’’ followers led by the unwilling-to-do-right leaders;
We are not only a “nation of thieves” as Col. Powell the then American Chief of Military Forces said but also a nation of liars, cowards and narcissists who do not want any personal suffering to ourselves for liberation from our thieving leaders.
Samuel Adedeji Adeleye is a Public Affairs Analyst.