Former general secretary of the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO), Mr. Ayo Opadokun, has said Nigeria is not a creation of the Nigerian people but that of the British colonial empire for their personal political and economic interests at the expense of Nigerians.
He made the statement recently in Yaba, Lagos, during the 70th birthday celebration of Linus Ezeala Okoroji.
He lamented that the ethnic nationalities that make up Nigeria had been living in their territories hundreds of years before the British invaders subdued them with their superior gun power and forced them into cohabitation.
“We never voluntarily came together to say we wanted to be Nigerians. Up till today, Nigerians have not been asked whether they want to belong to Nigeria. What we have today is a forced collaboration by the British colonial powers and when they were leaving, they handed us over to internal local colonisers, who have retained their forced authority on us whether we like it or not,” he said.
He submitted that the only way out of the present socio-economic and political predicament in Nigeria is to restructure the country along regional divide as it was before the military coup in 1966 and allow states or regions to control their resources and develop at their own pace.
In his opening remarks, Okoroji stated that Nigeria needs to have a befitting constitution in order to give her citizens and nationalities confidence and trust, as well as remove suspicion based on domination.
Speaking on the topic, “Nigeria: True federalism key to unlock her destiny and unleash her potential, the guest lecturer, Dr. Dele Ashiru of the Political Science Department, University of Lagos, traced the country’s problem to its structural foundation. He said the British colonialists up until when independence was achieved had always conceded to the north in the matters that affected the entire Nigeria state.
He argued that for Nigeria to fulfill its destiny and be relevant to the existential conditions of her citizens, it must be renegotiated through a conscious dialogue otherwise known as the sovereign national conference.