El Rufai slams IBB, Fani-Kayode over call for restructuring of Nigeria

Nasir El-Rufai, governor of Kaduna, has labeled most of the politicians calling for restructuring as “opportunists”.

A former Aviation Minister, Femi Fani-Kayode and ex-Military Head of State, General Ibrahim Gbadamosi Babangida (rtd.), had all called for Nigeria to be restructured.

Speaking on Sunrise Daily, a Channels Television programme, on Thursday, El-Rufai said those who have presidential ambition were exploiting the restructuring call.

According to him, “For many people, when you talk about restructuring, it is political opportunism. Most of what you see in the media, most of the people that talk about restructuring or give long lectures about restructuring are unable to give you any concrete ideas about what it really means.

“As I said, a lot of the talk on restructuring is political opportunism and irresponsibility in my opinion. It is popular and people that have presidential aspiration think it is a platform on which they can exploit this.”

El-Rufai added that the implementation of the 2014 national conference report was likely not to happen because the All Progressives Congress (APC never believed in it.

“We (APC) believe it was just a jamboree, we did not participate, our position has not changed. We are not going to look at it 2014 confab report because we do not think it even reflects the diversity of the views in Nigeria.

“If you look at the APC manifesto, all the elements to devolve power to the states, to change the balance in the federation are there and we are committed to that as a party and the national chairman of our party will restate that commitment and we are discussing it and as I said President Buhari and Acting President Osinbajo’s government has taken very concrete steps to move in that direction.

“We do not believe that this should be used as a basis for opportunists, we do not believe the 2014 confab report is a sensible basis to even begin. We all know the circumstances in which the so-called confab was put together, we all know the composition, how lopsided it was, how important stakeholders were not taken into account, how the compensation did not reflect the demographics and diversity of this country.

“We took a position as a party even then, not to participate but encourage our state governors at the level of the state government to be there at the table. Our position has not changed no matter what the senate thinks, the position of the party in that has not changed.

“We will need the help of the national assembly, the first step is to look at exclusive lists, second step to move on to deciding concrete steps, the third to look at the allocation of responsibilities and the fourth step requires legislation and constitutional amendments. So we will do that and it is not unilateral.

“This is where many of our politicians get it wrong, they think you can be irresponsible today and correct it tomorrow once you get headlines.”

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