The Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) has faulted Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo's recent comments on restructuring, stating that no leader can “address the grievances of the Niger Deltans except true structural reformation of the country”.
While addressing the Nigerian community in USA, Osinbajo had said Nigeria's problem is leadership, not restructuring.
However, in a statement, the Ijaw Youth Council said it could not understand the vice-president’s position on restructuring, noting that “Nigeria’s teething problems are feathered by the internal colonialism of indigenous Nigerians by the major tribes as well as the economic strangulations of the components states”.
Citing various peculiarities of the country that support the calls for restructuring, the council stated that Osinbajo should rather “convince his boss to accept the clamour for true federalism”, noting that it is the “only panacea to a secured and economically viable country”.
The statement read: “We cannot comprehend where Osinbajo is standing on the issue of restructuring and true federalism. What IYC wishes to tell the world is that Nigeria's teething problems are feathered by the internal colonialism of indigenous Nigerians by the major tribes, as well as the economic strangulations of the component states.
“The reason why the Niger Delta region keeps on experiencing crisis is because of the oppressive, obnoxious, inimical and repressive laws that tend to colonise, immaculate and gag the people from having control of their destinies.
“There can be no commensurate solution to heal the wounds of the Niger Delta people of these decades of economic robbery. The only solution lies in the practice of true federalism and resource control, where each of the federating states will harness and control the resources in their domains for a competitive and stabilised economy. No leader, however good he may be, can sufficiently address the grievances of the Niger Deltans except true structural reformation of the country.
“We make bold to say that even the farmers and herdsmen’s crisis in the middle belt and parts of southern Nigeria is chiefly caused by the quasi-federal system Nigeria is practising. If states are allowed to have major control of their economies and security, the problems of insecurity, even development and unemployment will be addressed.
“Osinbajo had earlier said in June this year that the present administration was not opposed to restructuring as being canvassed in many quarters. It is surprising to us that he is singing a different tune so soon. The Vice President cannot speak from both sides of his mouth. He is quite aware that the importance of restructured Nigeria for the country's continuous corporate existence is non-negotiable. Osinbajo should rather convince his boss to accept the clamour for true federalism. That is the only panacea to a secured and economically viable country.”