Restructuring will enhance grassroots development in Nigeria – Atiku

Acheme Jack, Kano

Former vice president and PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar

Former vice president and a presidential candidate under the People’s Democratic Party ,PDP, Atiku Abubakar has reiterated that his advocacy for the restructuring of Nigeria  which hinges principally on devolution of powers to regions, State and local governments is based on the understanding it will help to enhance security infrastructure as well as socio-economic development.

He said the campaign, if adopted, will slim down responsibilities of the Nigerian government and transfer the bulk of it to the geopolitical zones, the State and local governments that are closer to the grassroots.

The fifth time presidential aspirant since 1993 spoke to newsmen in Kano State, as part of his political interaction before the PDP presidential primaries delegate conference to be held soon.

Devolving more powers
Atiku said at the moment, the Nigerian government has too much on its plate and it is not able to pay attention to all parts of the country.

“My believe is that by devolving more powers to those States or regions, they are closer to the people, particularly in areas like education, health, infrastructure and so on. I want to see a small Nigerian government”

“A small Nigerian government which will deal essentially with matters like defence, foreign affairs, currency, Central Bank and immigration. Very few areas for the Nigerian government,” he explained.

“So if we give you more powers and resources to develop your respective states then you should hold your states responsible not the Federal Government that is what I mean by restructuring, which during implementation will be carried out in phases.”

On the campaign as political gimmick to say vote for him on the platform of the PDP, Atiku said, “I think the APC must be very ignorant because my position on the issue of restructuring dates back to the reports of constitutional restructuring of 1994. If you check the report you will find my contributions as far as restructuring is concerned.”

PDP several contestants
On the issue of the PDP having 12 contestants going for primaries, which may lead to defeated contestants living to working less for the party, Atiku explained that “there is a process which will culminate in the emergence of one person”.

“One thing we have all agreed and signed to is that whoever emerges and wins we will support and vote for that person. We did that in APC and it worked and we are called by the party to do exactly the same thing,” he declared.

Soliciting for vote
Atiku was received by mammoth PDP supporters led by the embattled chairman of the party in the State Senator  Musa’d El-Jibrin Doguwa where he also met with the party leaders, solicited the Kano delegates to vote for him in the forthcoming party’s primaries.

“I am overwhelmed with the support, l received from the people of Kano and North-west. Anytime l solicits for the support of Kano PDP, they are always ready to do that.

”I once more call on you to support me as we go for the presidential Primaries. Because I need to win to solve the insecurity and economic challenges currently facing the nation which were not so intense in the last PDP administrations,” he added.

Sammie Idika