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Southern Governors Meet, Pressure For Restructuring

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Two meetings of governors of the 17 southern states and governors elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) have culminated in increased calls for restructuring and state police. The meeting of the southern governors held on Tuesday, May 11 in Asaba, Delta State. The governors banned open grazing in Southern Nigeria, called for restructuring of the Federation to create state policing, review of the revenue allocation formular, as well as the reflection of federal character in appointments into Federal Government agencies. The governors also called on the Federal Government to initiate a national dialogue and urged President Muhammadu Buhari to address the country on the challenges of insecurity.

At the meeting of PDP governors held in Ibadan, Oyo State on Monday, May 17, the governors demanded an alteration to the Constitution to devolve powers to state governments for the creation of state police. The governors called on the National Assembly to expedite passage of the Electoral Act (Repeal and Re-enactment) bill. The governors also asked for the prioritisation of the welfare, training, equipment and funding of all security agencies, particularly the police.

The security challenges in the country have given rise to calls for an overhaul of the security architecture, with governors repeatedly asking for state police. Also, calls for restructuring have gained momentum, as Nigerians no longer believe that the current system of governance is adequate to run the country and address the needs of its heterogenous population. Observers have continued to make reference to the  national conference held in 2014 under the Goodluck Jonathan administration, which took into account some of these issues and produced a robust report, that is yet to be implemented.