Even though some Nigerians initially expressed skepticism, that convening a National conference only a couple of months to a general election was a ploy by the then PDP led federal government to score cheap political points and a strategy aimed at gathering people of diverse interests together and enriching their pockets in order to ensure support at the 2015 elections. If the resolutions of the 2014 National Conference are anything to go by, it would be difficult for any person or group who has the best interest of Nigeria at heart to conclude that the conference which brought together eminent Nigerians, elder statesmen and diverse interest groups as a monumental waste of time and financial resources.
Regardless of the fact that the then opposition APC and now the governing party never supported the idea of convening a national conference at the time, and what Nigerians think of the confab, its outcome and quality resolutions remains the decision of the representatives of the Nigerian people. Even if the APC and president Buhari do not agree or believe in the entire outcome of the conference, the fact that government is a continuum makes it incumbent on the present administration to carefully study the resolutions and report with the aim of implementing the ones that would add value to the wellbeing of Nigerians.
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Among other several very useful resolutions of the 2014 National conference are; section 5.1.8 which effectively proffer solution to the age-long and incessant crisis between Fulani herdsmen and Famers across the country. Sub sections 1(a) and (b), and 6 (a) (b) and (c) if religiously implemented will permanently put an end to the needless bloodshed usually characterized by the cattle rearers/famers’ clashes. Section 5.2.2 (K) (M) and (P) of the conference report carefully addressed the rights of women to enjoy full privileges of an indigene both In their home states and their husband’s. The rights of every Nigerian regardless of the part of the country they choose to reside to enjoy all rights, privileges and facilities as being enjoyed by the indigenes, and the need to strengthen institutions to prohibit and punish criminal conducts targeted to kill or destroy lives and properties on the basis of origin, religion or circumstances have been aptly captured.
Section 5.2.4 (e) (f) (g) (k) (L) and (M) of the Conference Report proffers a systematic and holistic approach to preventing and combating issues of insecurity, insurgency and inter-boundary crimes by effectively reforming and adequately kitting and equipping the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS). Section 5.3.1 (12) had taken ample care of all forms of abuse against women’s right and rape, which if properly implemented would address issues pertaining to physical humiliation, emotional torture and all forms of deprivation that widows are being subjected to across the country. Issues of youth unemployment and restiveness would have been properly given the attention it deserves by carefully implementing section 5.3.3 (6) and (9) a, b, c. While section 5.4.4 would finally laid to rest the agitations by many that the current sharing formula of funds accruing to the Federal account among the three tiers of government, which gives more than 50% of the allocation to the Federal government is defective, and the need to set aside special funds for the development of mineral resources in line with the current realities and the need to diversify the economy was recommended in section 5.4.7 of the Conference Reports.
Not only would section 5.5.3 if implemented put an end to piracy and all forms of stealing of intellectual properties, it would also lead to an increase in the country’s gross domestic products GDP. Section 5.9(18) adequately outlined how to effectively reform the Nigeria prison from the present decayed state into a well structured institution that would be what the prison was really designed and meant to be. Section 5.10(1) proffers the way to go in order to avoid the incessant crisis occasioned by land boundary disputes across the nation while section 5.12 (8) of the confab reports sorts to finally put to rest political agitations within the states and at the federal level by recommending rotation of power i.e. the position of governor of a state should be rotated among the three senatorial districts, while that of the president should be rotated among the six geopolitical zones of this country in order to ensure equity, Justice, fairness and deeper sense of belonging.
These are only a very few out of the several resolutions of the 2014 National Conference which are meant to lay a foundation for a new Nigeria. A new Nigeria that we all clamored and yearned for, a new Nigeria that would be the pride of all and the new Nigeria that would earn the respect and admiration of the international communities.
Nigerians voted president Buhari to come and rescue the nation by killing the wide spread corruption, cleaning up the mess created by the long years of misrule and mismanagement and usher us into a new Nigeria. To effectively usher us into this new Nigeria of our dream the need for the present administration to look into and implement some of the far-reaching quality and very useful resolutions of 2014 National Conference without prejudice to the fact that it was convened by a PDP led government, is sacrosanct and inevitable.
President Buhari should rise above partisan politics and chauvinism and consider the confab reports in the interest of Nigerians and Nigeria. The president should be patriotic enough to reject and rebuff every attempt and moves by enemies of Nigeria and selfish individuals to prevail on him to jettison and abandon the Report of the 2014 National Conference, as doing so will not be in the best interest of this country and his administrations drive to put Nigeria on a sound and accelerated footing for development and the desired change.
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