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Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, has said the 19 northern states are not afraid of the proposed restructuring of the country.
Tambuwal stated this yesterday in Jos, Plateau State, at the annual Law Week and memorial lecture by the Nigerian Bar Association, Jos branch, for Justice Dauda Azaki, who died 20 years ago.
The statement came after a remark by his Borno State counterpart, Mr. Shettima, dismissing that the clamour for restructuring elicited widespread condemnation, especially from eminent southern Nigerians and groups from the southern half of the country.
“I can confidently say here that we in the northern part of Nigeria are not afraid of restructuring,” Gov Tambuwal said.
The Sokoto governor, who is a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, said contrary to insinuations that northern Nigerians were opposed to restructuring of the country, those saying so were merely raising a false alarm.
Governor Tambuwal stressed that northerners were not afraid of the economic implications of restructuring. He said most states in the north have enough mineral deposits to be self-sustaining.
He added that Nigerians from all parts of the country desire true federalism.
Speaking in the same vein, Bauchi State Governor, Mohammed Abubakar, said restructuring is a welcome development as long as the proposed restructuring will not ignite rancour in the country.
Abubakar urged Nigerians to be properly educated on the issue to allay fears among some of them.
On his part, Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong, also called for caution on the issue.
Lalong said the agitation for restructuring almost caused the country another round of unrest.
“A misunderstanding of the concept of restructuring among the younger generation has also undoubtedly given rise in some quarters to the provocative and inciting calls for seccesion and the dissolution of the Nigerian state,” he said.
Governor Lalong said he supported the policy of restructuring, but lamented that some of the agitations for restructuring had veered into hate speeches.
Returning to the topic of the event, Tambuwal admonished Nigerian judges and lawyers to adjudicate speedily on cases to avoid prolonging stay of persons awaiting trial in prisons
Earlier, chairman of the Jos branch of the NBA, Ralph Monye, criticised the prosecution of some judges in Abuja for alleged corrupt practices.
“I had strongly condemned that despicable act and in solidarity with their Lordships, I had predicted that the Judiciary, which seemed at that time to be under intense fire, would surely come out unscathed. The dust has since settled and mist of the judges have since resumed in their places of primary assignments.”
Monye said practitioners of other professions were not being questioned for doing wrong, and called for the prosecution of some security operatives for inhuman treatment of citizens.
“The DSS (State Security Service) is still one of the security outfits in Nigeria with no one calling for its disbandment,” he said.
The theme of the 2017 Law Week of the association was: “Restructuring: A Panacea for Nigeria’s Development and Cohesion.”