Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Two-party system, remedy to ethnic politics in Africa - Akinyemi

29 October 2015, 08:44

Lagos - Prof. Bolaji Akinyemi, a former Minister of External Affairs and the Deputy Chairman of the 2014 National Conference, on Wednesday in Lagos recommended a two-party system for African countries as a possible solution to ethnic politics on the continent.

Akinyemi made the assertion as the key speaker at the 2015 Annual Lecture organised by Aelex Law Firm with the theme, "African Countries: Politics, Democracy and Ethnicity."

He said: "In the 1960s, the United Nations and the world were opposing ethnic sectionalism but by the 1990s the United Nations and the International Community had become more flexible to ethnic realities."

"This interpretation led to the opening of more realities for Africa leading to the breakdown of Sudan and Ethiopia."

"A two-party system, in my view, is a possible answer to the common problem of ethnic politics in Africa."

Akinyemi said that ethnicity was not only an African problem, but a universal phenomenon, noting that the Balkans’ war was fought based on ethnicity.

Also Read: Senate to screen new INEC Chairman on Thursday

Citing many examples of multi-ethnicity, Akinyemi said: "Very few countries in the world are uni-ethnic, the United Kingdom has had 73 Prime Ministers, 63 of which have been from Britain, 7 from Scotland, 1 from Wales and 1 from Ireland."

"Germany comprises 81 per cent Germans while the remaining 19 per cent have been various ethnicities," the media quotes Akinyemi as saying.

Akinyemi added that Nigeria had tried to provide balancing in the issue of ethnicity in political appointments through the concept of federal character as provided for in Section 13 of the 1999 Constitution, noting that the provision had been abused.

Earlier, Senator Ike Nwachukwu, a former Minister of Foreign Affairs, said that ethnicity remained the bane of democratic practices in African countries.

Nwachukwu said: "African people have to grow beyond the resentment of one another."

"For instance, a survey conducted from 2005-2008 on trust showed that 68% of Scandinavians trust each other while only 18-25% of Sub-Saharan Africans trust each other."

"The 2014 National Conference bought solutions to this issue and provided balance to the ethnic problems facing the country."

"It retained power to the people and recommended copious amendments to the constitution without reference to creed, gender or ethnicity.’’

He, however, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to consider as a matter of priority implementation of the 2014 National Conference.

Also Read:

"I urge President Muhammadu Buhari to implement the recommendations of the 2014 National Conference."

Yemi Adamolekun, the Executive Director of Enough is Enough Nigeria, a civil society group, recommended that citizens should be properly educated in history and the arts.

She said: "Citizens should be properly educated to enable them ascertain their rights and history."

Adamolekun, in her speech, agreed with Akinyemi's call for a two-party system.

"I agree with Professor Akinyemi's call for a two-party system but I do not think it should be legislated until we understand that the price of democracy is for the common good of others."

Theophilus Emuwa, the Managing Partner of Aelex Law Firm, in his address of welcome, said the annual lecture had provided a platform for national discourse on politics, business and law.

Emuwa said: "It is our hope that contributions of this discourse to the Nigerian society will be properly appreciated." 


Tags politics

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...