The pan-Yoruba socio-cultural organisation, Afenifere, has described the statement credited to Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, on restructuring as an opposition to the progress of the country.
The Publicity Secretary of the association, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, said the statement of the governor had further revealed him as one of those who did not want the country to be restructured.
Odumakin maintained that the only way out of the current agitations in the country was to restructure the current set-up of the nation.
He stated, “El-Rufai should tell us his own idea to correct the imbalance in the country because as far as we are concerned, the 2014 confab report is about the closest to the democratic representation of Nigeria.
“The confab consisted of representatives of all segments of the societies in Nigeria. But for somebody, who occupies a responsible office of a governor to be saying those who are talking about restructuring are irresponsible, it is very unfortunate.
“It is very sad for the governor to be talking like an area boy on the television. In Nigeria of today, we can now begin to take a census of those who are against restructuring – they are President Buhari, el-Rufai, Ango Abdullahi, Lai Mohammed and Tanko Yakassai.
“Aside from those people, everybody in Nigeria supports restructuring; that is the song everybody is playing all over the country as of today, whether we like it or not. Those who are against it are insignificant.’’
El-Rufai had, on Thursday, condemned some politicians, who have joined the calls for the restructuring of the country.
Describing such people as political opportunists, el-Rufai noted that they opposed restructuring when they were in power at the federal level, wondering why the agitators had now joined the calls if not for political reasons.
The governor said this when he featured on a breakfast programme on Channels Television, Sunrise Daily, on Thursday and monitored by The PUNCH in Abuja.
El-Rufai stated that the current administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had restructured governance in practical terms more than the previous governments.
The governor was reminded that prominent Nigerians and groups, including the Progressives Governors’ Forum, of which el-Rufai is a member, had called on the government to facilitate the restructuring of the country.
The governor was asked why restructuring was jettisoned by the ruling All Progressives Congress government despite that it was contained in the party’s manifesto.
El-Rufai stated, “It was not jettisoned. I think, in fact, the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari has done more in practical terms about federalism than the previous administrations put together.
“Those who talk about restructuring see it as largely political opportunism, in my opinion, rather than practical reality.