By Bimbo Akindunbi
Professor Akin Oyebode, a professor of Law and International Jurisprudence, University of Lagos, has warned that if Nigeria is not restructured through devolution of powers to the states, the nation will die.
The legal luminary made the statement, in an interview on Channels Television, while reacting to the recent vote by the National Assembly against devolution of powers to the states.
According to him, restructuring, or reconfigurating are the modalities of our co-habitation which must be addressed urgently.
He said it was quite unfortunate that the Senate left the issue out of contention, stressing that without restructuring, rethinking or re-elaborating the modalities of our co-existence, they have lost the game.
His words: “I am not altogether surprised, because when we were at the Confab, we tried to suggest the necessity for devolution. But there were many forces there gathered, that were not totally convinced that Nigeria needed restructuring, reconfiguration or in fact devolution of powers.
“And I’m not surprised that at the present point in time, there are so many members of the Senate that have invested interest in maintaining the status quo.
“So for me, they have lost the time and the opportunity. It is a missed opportunity to make the statement when the only game in town now is devolution of powers, what they call restructuring. “
“If you don’t restructure Nigeria, then the country will die”
Also speaking on the call for amendment of the 1999 Nigerian constitution, Prof. Oyebode suggested a new constitution for the country, rather than panel beated constitution.