Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar has called for the restructuring of Nigeria.
Atiku said Nigeria would have peace, unity and prosperity if and when restructured.
In a statement on Monday, the former Vice President pointed out that the lack of restructuring was responsible for the recurrent ethnic and religious crisis in the country.
He statement titled: “Nigeria Needs The Peace Serum of Restructuring,” reads partly: “Nigeria needs to be restructured. Just look at Nigeria today. This truth is staring us in our collective faces.
He called for the restructuring of the country, pointing out that the unitary foundation which Nigeria has been running on has not yielded much change.
He said, “Nigeria needs to be restructured. Just look at Nigeria today. This truth is staring us in our collective faces.
“The current ethnic and religious clashes bedevilling Nigeria are symptoms of the disease. They themselves are not the illness. We must address the root causes of the various symptoms of insecurity Nigeria now faces.
“Nigeria needs peace, unity and prosperity. But all three of these virtues are dependent on Nigeria having social justice. Without justice, there cannot be cohesiveness in a multi-ethnic and multi-religious nation like Nigeria.
“Nigeria has foundational issues, which we have to resolve. Until we resolve those issues, our nation may not fulfil its potentials of being the beacon of light for the Black Race, even if we have the most righteous people at the helm.
“It has been said by many behavioural scientists that ‘the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.’
“We have been operating from the same unitary foundation, and have given it several names since January 15, 1966. Other than slight name changes, the mould has remained the same, and the yield has changed little.
“Yes, there will be improvements and retrogressions here and there, due to the character and personality differences of the men and women at the helm. However, until the foundational fault lines are addressed, whatever progress one man makes, can be undone by his predecessor, often in a matter of months.
“If half of our people expend their energies pulling Nigeria in one direction, and the other half counter by pulling her in the other direction, our motherland will never know peace, unity and prosperity.
“Nigeria needs to restructure to avoid the various failed state prophecies, first advanced by an American think-tank against Nigeria in 2006. Most recently regurgitated by the Financial Times of London, about a month ago. To be forewarned is to be forearmed.
“What is a failed state? A failed state is a political sovereign geographic territory whose government has deteriorated to a level where it cannot fulfil a sovereign government’s basic responsibilities, such as the security of life and property, and upholding law and order.
“Nigeria is not a failed state. However, we are at risk of becoming a failed state, if we do not resolve our foundational challenges that make it rather difficult for the central government to discharge her responsibilities effectively.”
On the conflict between herders and farmers, Atiku cited the strategy used by authorities in Brazil and Argentina to prevent such from happening.
He said, “In pre-colonial times, and during the First Republic, Nigeria had well marked out grazing routes. That ensured that grazers knew where to go and restricted contacts between them and farmers.
“Now, these routes have disappeared. Of course, when this happens, there will be conflict. Brazil and Argentina are the largest beef exporters in the world, and they have grazing routes.
“In fact, In Brazil, pasture land outweighs planted cropland by about five times. This is because all tiers of governments in Brazil have worked together to restrict these areas, not only to avoid conflict between grazers and farmers but also to ensure that Brazil’s great forests, including the Amazon, are not deforested.
“If Brazil and Argentina can do it, we can do it too. We have to put in the political and intellectual effort.”