APC national leader, Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu, has stated that Nigeria is being run like a military-like unitary system, which isn’t good for the country.
He said this at the 91st anniversary of Daily Times newspaper and the Times Heroes awards in Abuja on Tuesday. He was represented by Osun state governor Rauf Aregbesola.
According to him, Nigeria is only a federation in name but in practice is a unitary state.
“Let us streamline governance; federalism in word and deed,” he said. “Our constitution declares Nigeria a federation of 36 states however we still grapple with the vestiges of our past under the military rule. In any case, we still function like a unitary state despite the constitution. More power and resources need to devolve to the states.
“The Federal Government is taking on too much. We cannot flourish with over-concentration of powers at the centre. Some of the 68 items on the exclusive federal list should be transferred to the residual list as it was in most federal constitutions.
“In the 1963 Constitution, there were extensive powers granted to regions which allowed them to carry out their immense responsibility as they then saw fit.”
He said the country’s unitary political system offers a deceptive and fake economic prosperity which was exposed when oil prices crashed.
According to him, items which ordinarily should be handled by state governments, like police, prisons, stamp duty, taxation of incomes, profits and capital gains, registration of businesses, incorporation of companies, traffic on Federal Government roads passing through states, trade, commerce among others were transferred from the concurrent to the exclusive list.
This is at variance with the true spirit of federalism, he said, and termed the current unitary system as a ‘monster.’
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