ONLY POLITICIANS WANT STATES
POLITICIANS are out again to prove that their desires are more important than Nigeria's future. Their emphasis on state creation as an important point in resolving the Nigerian question remains misplaced.
The reality is that the legislators must feel beyond their own pulses. State creation is critical to Nigeria's challenges. If there is a point at which diminishing returns sets in for States, Nigeria probably passed it more than 25 years ago.
Many reminisce about the regions, particularly the first three that established the few development notches Nigeria still has. More States fragmented resources, human and physical, minimising development and escalating calls for more States.
Proposals abound about solutions to the quagmire that Nigeria landed with creating States. Some have suggested creating six more States to afford each of the geo-political zones six States, while the zones would operate like the former regions.
This proposal would have implications for the National Assembly, where the number of legislators and their comforts would be abridged in line with their lower contributions to governance. The zones would have regional assemblies, no state assemblies.
More sweeping suggestions include scrapping States, creating regions and more local government areas to bring governments closer to the people, and save costs that state bureaucracies consume.
If the devolution of powers is factored in, it is expected the regional assemblies would be busier, than the National Assembly which membership would be almost part time.
None of these seems to be getting to the National Assembly, which still considers state creation an important factor for the survival of the country.
'If Nigerians agree that there is need for more states and that there are injustices that needed to be addressed in area of state creation, and they believe that the imbalances need to be adjusted in all parts of the country, we must address it. If Nigerians agree in that regard, we can build consensus around it and go ahead to create the State. I think it is something we are going to give a trial because there are valid requests that need to be addressed,' Deputy Senate President Ikechukwu Ekweremadu said.
Creation of states does not promote the justice Ekweremadu preaches. Where would those whose requests are rejected find justice? It is more obscene where most senators pushing the cause are dreaming of new States where they would retire as governors.
Politicians want States for their selfish ends, it is not about justice which Section 14 (2b) of our Constitution summaries as, 'The security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government.' The National Assembly and governments have largely ignored this provision in their 13 years' quest for justice.