The Restructure of Nigerian Federal System: A Task That Need Be Done

Abstract

Of recent one of the most trending political concepts within the Nigerian political and social landscape has been the concept of restructure or its continuum (restructuring). Ironically, despite the prevalence in usage of this word in social and political discourses across the country and beyond, very little is conceptualized or agreed on by all class of people as what is the actual meaning or the scope of restructuring the country needs. To some the term means minor adjustments in the configuration of power relation between the federal and other composing units of governments. The term in the view of others stands for maximum severance of all form of relationships between the federating units. This severance may mean the decentralization of powers and responsibilities of the state in favour of the regional governments as against the federal level, therefore relationship can only be acknowledged in the form of loosed confederation. But what seems to be agreed on by all, is that the Nigerian federal structure has some fundamental defects that need urgent corrections, the extent of which is left in the imagination and belief of the advocates. This paper provides an insight into conceptual clarity of what is meant by restructure and the act of restructuring. The article is of the view that structural imbalance in the polity is grossly responsible for the high level of mistrust, ethnic and religious crises, lack of accelerated development, political schisms and other social vices amongst the ethnic nationalities that makeup the country.  The paper underscores the need for further dissolutions of political and economic autonomy to regions as against the current enormous power currently wielded by the federal government. It also recommends reversal to true fiscal federalism and regional control of the natural resources within their localities as against the current position of federal government ownership and control. Adoption of the six geopolitical zones as regional governments as against the current proliferation of unviable states. Also recommended is the adoption of rotational presidency among the regions. This is to be enshrined in the constitution to address the issue and cry of marginalization in the polity. These recommendations amongst others will serve as panacea to addressing the instability and mistrust question within the polity.

Keywords: Autonomy, Federalism, Nigeria, Regionalism, Restructure


Article Review Status: Published

Pages: 66-88 (Download PDF)

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