Oil Discovery In North Will Aid Restructuring — Afe Babalola
The founder of the Afe Babalola University , Ado Ekiti, Aare Afe Babalola ( SAN) , has said the news of crude oil discovery in the North gladdens his heart, because such a discovery will hasten the restructuring of the country .
This was as he backed the new constitution being proposed by the National Assembly , saying it would ensure rapid development of Nigeria ’s federating states and geopolitical zones .
Babalola spoke in Lagos on Wednesday at the maiden edition of the Goke Omisore Annual Lecture organised by the Voice of Reason .
The lecture , with the theme , ‘ Restructuring: Building a knowledge -based society , ’ held at the MUSON Centre, Onikan and Babalola was represented by the Provost , Postgraduate School , Afe Babalola University , Prof. Kunle Olowu , as chairman on the occasion.
The lecture , delivered by an American -based aerospace engineer and author, Prof. James Fabunmi , was attended by dignitaries including the Aare Onakakanfo of Yorubaland , Iba Gani Adams ; the President General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief John Nwodo ; Pa Ayo Adebanjo , a former governorship aspirant in Lagos State , Mr Jimi Agbaje and Chairman , Toyota Nigeria Limited, Chief Michael Ade – Ojo .
The Governor of Lagos State , Mr Babajide Sanwo -Olu , was represented by his Special Adviser on Drainage and Water Resources , Mr Joe Igbokwe.
Giving his remarks as chairman on the occasion, Babalola said his prayer was that there would be more oil discoveries around the country because “ it will make it easier for the country to embark on the process of restructuring and thereby solve the age -long problem of oil -producing states. ”
The elder statesman reiterated his belief that the 1999 Constitution was the bane of Nigeria’ s prosperity , saying it should be completely discarded .
He said the 1999 Constitution “ encourages indolence , lack of creativity , greed , avarice , wanton struggle for positions in the central government and untoward attitude of begging for monthly allocation from the Federal Government. ”
Babalola added that as a result of the constitution , politics had become the most lucrative business in the country .
While saying that he had seen the draft of the new constitution being proposed by the National Assembly , Babalola said if it scaled through it would make politics less attractive and pave the way for the emergence of “ transformational leaders ” in the country .
He said, “ The proposed new constitution would make politics less attractive . It will enable Nigeria to have transformational leaders , who will be visionary and enterprising ; who will serve for free ; who will only earn sitting allowances and who will use government money for the development of the country .
“ The new people ’ s constitution will put a most deserving end to the current prevalence of transactional leaders who are only out to make money for themselves . ”
The guest lecturer , Fabunmi , said it was time Nigerians should begin to expect less from government and focus on what they could do as individuals .
He advocated the building of a knowledge- based society to throw up inventors .
But Adebajo demanded that Nigeria must be restructured now as a panacea for the peaceful coexistence of the country .
He said until restructuring was carried out , Nigerians were doomed , noting that currently , the people of Nigeria were under slavery .
He , therefore , made a passionate call to the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu , and other Yoruba leaders in the APC “ to go and either persuade or pressurise the President , Major General Muhammadu Buhari ( retd. ) , to restructure Nigeria. ”
However, the President General, Ohanaeze, Chief Nwodo , advocated digital education to put Nigeria at par with other countries of the world , saying that “ digital companies are today world economic leaders . ”
Copyright PUNCH .