Former Commonwealth secretary general, Chief Emeka Anyaoku, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Assembly to delegate powers to the Federating units; to enable them handle their internal security and significant aspects of their socio-economic development.
Anyaoku said this during Justice Dadi Onyeama’s book launch, which held in Abuja, on Tuesday.
Earlier in the week, prominent Nigerians, including Prof. Wole Soyinka and former presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Goodluck Jonathan, warned of impending disaster if Buhari does not immediately tackle insecurity and the country’s economic woes.
In his speech, Anyaoku warned the country is on the brink but said Nigeria’s problems can be tackled effectively, by delegating powers to the federating units and running an inclusive government.
He said: “My message is two-faceted and is principally to our president and the National Assembly which is that Nigeria is on the brink and our foremost national challenge is the management of the country’s diversity. Every diverse federal country throughout the world achieves political stability and socio-economic development through successfully managing its national diversity. There are two common keys to this. The first is having an inclusive central government which gives the peoples of the component parts of the federation a sense of belonging that in turn underpins the sense of unity and patriotism in all the citizens.
“The second key is having adequate delegation of powers to the federating units; to enable them handle their internal security and significant aspects of their socio-economic development.
““Our country, Nigeria, is indisputably a diverse country–multi-ethnic, multi-religious, and multi-cultural. I must stress here that I belong to the school of thought who strongly believe that our country, Nigeria, albeit created in 1914, by accident of history, should be sustained and nourished as one national entity.
“I believe that with an insightful and sensitive management of its affairs, the Nigerian federation with its size and resources will offer peace and stability to all its component parts, as well as opportunities for self-fulfilling development to all its citizens.
“However, today, Nigeria is on the brink. For no objective observer, including those in government, can deny that the current state of affairs in our country is extremely worrisome.
“We see an unprecedented diminution of national unity; we see an unprecedented level of insecurity of life and property with kidnappings and killings of human beings occurring virtually every day in many parts of the country…”