Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State says Nigeria will overcome most of its challenges if true federalism is entrenched in the country’s polity.
Makinde stated this during the 2021 National Democracy Summit, which he organised in Ibadan on Tuesday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the summit was held at the International Conference Centre, University of Ibadan, Ibadan.
Makinde, in his speech, entitled: ‘The Future of Democracy’, explained the dilemma of Nigerian governors in the face of the current security challenges in the country.
He noted that devolution of what he called the over-concentrated powers at the centre would go a long way in strengthening democracy in Nigeria.
The governor urged the Federal Government to start thinking of ways of galvanising powers for the development of the nation.
He lamented that the incursion of armed herders, criminals and bandits into some states in the country had posed serious security challenge.
The governor advocated for ‘state policing’ as a way of curbing the nation’s challenges.
Giving the scenario which played out at Igangan in Ibarapa axis of the state recently, he stressed the need to entrench state policing in each state to forestall further attacks on innocent citizens.
The governor also called for review of the security architecture of the states as well as the exploration of the natural resources domiciled in each state.
“States need independent powers over their security architecture. We all know that without a secure environment, all efforts to attract investors will be in vain.
“True federalism takes away excuses from governors and allows citizens to be more interested in local politics and its outcome,” Makinde said.
According to him, his administration was working hard to entrench true federalism in the state through careful implementation of the four pillars on which its administration stands.
According to him, his administration has been focusing on education, economy, health and security in the state, thus resulting in the development of the state economy.
“We are working hard and we are seeing the results already. We have the second highest IGR in the whole of Nigeria, despite the COVID-19 pandemic,” he said.
Speaking earlier, the Governors of Ondo and Osun states, Messrs Rotimi Akeredolu and Gboyega Oyetola, noted that the summit would further strengthen the nation’s democracy.
The governors, who were both represented, said that the summit would afford stakeholders the opportunity to look at grey areas and suggest ways of moving the country forward. (NAN)