From Oluseye Ojo, Ibadan
Elder statesman and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, has raised the alarm that Nigeria may not survive as a corporate entity if the country is not restructured.
He gave the warning in an interview with journalists in Ibadan after he chaired the first session of the 22nd synod of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), Ibadan Diocese, at the Cathedral of St. James the Great, Oke-Bola, Ibadan, last Friday.
Iwuanyanwu, who advised that Nigeria should be returned to the parliamentary system of government in practice before the country’s independence in 1960, contended that the South-east geo-political zone has been completely schemed out in the affairs of the country in spite of the major roles being played by the Igbo in the growth and development of the country.
“So, I sincerely say that unless we restructure, Nigeria will have problem. Nobody should make any mistake about it. When you see some people talking about Biafra or so, I don’t think anybody wants to break away. Igbo believe in oneness of Nigeria. They believe that things are not working well in this country. That is why we must restructure Nigeria.
“We in the South-east and South-south, even South-west too, are all insisting on restructuring. South-west says we should restructure. South-east says we should restructure. South-south says we should restructure. Many right thinking people in the North say we should restructure. Anybody who is wishing Nigeria well, anybody who wants this country to survive must insist on restructuring. It is very important to everybody,” he said.
Iwuanyanwu stated further that before independence, Nigeria had nationalities, which had their own systems of government, technology and culture.
“You cannot do anything, ignoring the culture of the people. We need to come back to the system in operation before independence that made us to come together to have Nigeria.
“In Igboland, we marry essentially one wife and we don’t get many children. Obviously, in other parts of the country, people get many children. In Igboland, a man can have five children, elsewhere a man can have between 50 and 60 children,” he added.
According to him, Igbo have realised that if Nigeria is not restructured, with their own cultural system, they would be handicapped because democracy and winning elections have to do with numbers of the people. “Anybody who fails to restructure Nigeria now is not fair to Igbo,” he noted.
Iwuanyanwu, however, extolled President Muhammadu Buhari on the success recorded so far in the anti-graft war of his administration, which according to him, has brought many awful revelations of corruption in the society, and has shown man’s inhumanity to man.
“I think we must congratulate the President for the efforts he has made. But I like to observe that Nigeria has deteriorated. The total damage is incredible. Everything around here is corrupt. The schools are corrupt. The society is corrupt. The fact is that the President has started this battle very well. This is a battle for everyone of us, including journalists. Everybody must join hands to fight it.
“We want to found a new Nigeria where people will from the cradle know that corruption is bad. It should be inbuilt in us. That was the society where we were all born,” Iwuanyanwu said.