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AKEREDOLU WANTS SMALLER CABINET, CALLS FOR TRUE FEDERALISM

By NBF News
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Former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN) has called for a reduction in the number of ministers in the Federal Executive Council (FEC). The former NBA boss expressed this view in Lagos yesterday while speaking at the 2011 Annual Chief Alao Aka-Bashorun Lecture, organised by the NBA, Ikeja Branch.

Speaking on the theme of the lecture: 'Deepening the Democratic Culture in Nigeria: The Role of the Legal Profession,' he called for an amendment of the Constitution to remove the provision that allows three ministerial nominees from each state in the cabinet to reduce the cost of governance.'Lawyers must take up the agitation for the removal of the provision which permits each state to send three nominees in the federal cabinet, in its entirety,' he said.

Akeredolu implored NBA to always be in the forefront whenever it becomes issue of setting agenda for the development of our democracy, which according to him, has not impacted positively in the living standards of the people. He also called for devolution of powers and entrenchment of true federalism as a panacea towards solving the myriads of problems bedeviling the country. According to the ex-NBA boss, true federalism would include creation of state police to check insecurity and the ability of states to manage their energy needs.

'The provision of electricity should not be the exclusive preserve of the Federal Government in a country with fast growing population. The states must be allowed to enter into contracts with independent power companies with a view to generating power for themselves. This is the only way to stop the cabal who constantly frustrate all genuine efforts of the government to resolve this problem,' Akeredolu stated.

In his own address, Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) who was represented by the State Solicitor-General, Lawal Pedro urged lawyers to play a pivotal role in the entrenchment of good governance in the country, adding that legal practitioners should be involved both directly and indirectly in the political process in order to change the society.

In his address of welcome, Mr Adebamigbe Omole,Chairman, NBA, Ikeja Branch described late Chief Aka-Bashorun, a former NBA president as a dogged fighter who contributed immensely to the nation's democracy.