Kaduna State Governor, Nasir el-Rufai has again added his voice to the growing call for devolution of powers between the Federal Government and the 36 states of the federation, insisting that it is what the country urgently needs to pull it back from the brink.
According to el-Rufai, there is an urgent need to have state and community police, decentralized judiciary and for states to control resources found in their domain, including oil and gas, mines and minerals.
The governor, who spoke at a programme tagged ‘Radio Now Urgent Conversation’ Aired on reporters on Friday, also said the state should be made to pay taxes and royalties to the federal government from the resources under their control.
He said: “I will dwell on three of the issues that I believe are critical to the immediate needs of the country to pull back from the brink.
“The first, it is imperative for Federal, state, and community policing. We do not have enough police. One centralised police for the country just has not worked.”
“Secondly, we must amend the constitution and relevant laws to ensure control of oil and gas, mines, and minerals in the states that already have control over land under the land use Act with royalties and taxes payable to the Federal Government and the Federation Account
“Number three, we must rectify the anomaly of a Federation that has a more or less unitary judiciary.”
“My first recommendation is to implement the three key devolution proposals that I mentioned above. Give us state police now, vest all minerals in the state now, and decentralised our judiciary now, not tomorrow, not later.”
Speaking further on banditry, el-Rufai noted that it is a national problem that affects Nigerians all over the country, calling for a common resolve to address the situation.
“It is an understatement to say that Nigeria is in one of its most difficult moments. The genuine fears for their lives and property felt by many citizens across the country need to be assuaged. All responsible persons must show compassion to our compatriots that have been affected while calming nerves.
“Banditry is a national problem, with victims from all parts of the country, and we should address it with a common resolve”, the governor said.