Thursday, January 26, 2017 11:23 pm
The News Agency of Nigeria, NAN reports that the Pro-Chancellor of University of Lagos, Prof. Jerry Gana, has urged the Federal Government to seek sustainable ways of ensuring that Nigerians live together in peace.
Gana made the call in his address at the 2015/2016 convocation ceremony of the institution on Thursday in Lagos.
According to him, the constitution clearly provides that the security and welfare of the people is the primary purpose of government.
“To greatly promote peace and stability, I believe we should have the courage to correct some fundamental defects in our federal system.
“As correctively observed, by our founding fathers, only a federal structure can provide a sustainable basis for living together in peace in such a huge country with deep cultural, political and historic diversities like Nigeria.
“But all is not well with the structure and related devolution of powers in our federation.
“To function well, a federation must have a balanced and equitable structure of federating units,’’ he said.
Gana noted that many had argued that the existing states have become too weak to serve as effective federating units to mediate relations with a powerful centre, hence the call for restructuring to find a fair, balanced, equitable but functional federal structure.
“Beyond the number and size of credible federating units, we must also together agree on the devolution of powers from the centre to such federating units and states.
“We must also properly resolve the very contentious issue of the fiscal federalism, especially the extremely crucial matter of revenue mobilization, resource ownership and fair revenue allocation.
“Added to these major issues are the profound and fundamental matters of leadership, good governance, balanced development and mutual agreement on the very nature of the Nigerian state,’’ he said.
The Pro-Chancellor also noted that dialogue, consultation were critical to ensuring harmony among various groups that live in the country.
“We need to talk and dialogue and consult.
“These matters cannot be resolved by force but through dialogue and consultations, hence the wisdom of 2014 National Conference.
“We urge that its major recommendations be examined and implemented,’’ he said