Restructuring now a weapon of blackmail, says Segun Adeniyi

A former Special Adviser to late President Umar Musa Yar’adua, Segun Adeniyi, has said that the call for restructuring has become a weapon of blackmail in the hands of politicians.

Speaking on Wednesday at The Platform, annual conference organized by Covenant Christian Centre, the chairman of ThisDay editorial board, said there are those who are fixated on the number of local governments in Kano as opposed to the number in Lagos or that some people are ‘productive’ just because oil is buried under their soil.

“The restructuring that most of us advocate is not about north or south, east or west nor is it about the distribution of rent. It is about how we can harness the potential of our country for the greater good of our people.”

“There are also those who are obsessed about creating parity among some ethnic nationalities as well as those who, like my friend Louis Odion would say, enjoy presiding over the seating arrangement in a sinking Titanic on a perilous sea even when it should be glaring to the discerning that the current structure is unsustainable.

Comparing Nigeria’s situation to that of a family who depended on income earned from a cow, he said Nigeria might not achieve economic diversification if it does not get to “a critical level of constructive dissatisfaction with the status quo”.

. “Therefore, it’s either we have a conversation about the future of our country in an orderly manner or it is forced upon us under circumstances in which we may have little or no control. We are already living on borrowed time.”

He said that Nigeria has to migrate to a place where oil earnings are used exclusively for capital expenditure in human and physical infrastructure.

“That there will be a convulsion at some point is no longer in doubt. What will trigger it is what one may not be able to put his finger on.