Daniel: Nigeria’s problem can be resolved economically, says ‘Yoruba want a country of equity, fairness, justice’


Former Governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, on Monday, declared that with critical thinking, the bulk of Nigeria’s problem can be resolved economically.
Daniel, who recently defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), also spoke on insecurity, fuel subsidy, zoning, agitation by some self determination groups and other national issues.
Daniel, governor of the South-West state from 2003 to 2011, said: “The bulk of our problems as a nation can be resolved economically. We have resources to resolve most of our problems with minimal borrowing.

“The bulk of our money has not been planned to remain in our country. Management is very important. We have to find a way of keeping Nigeria’s money inside Nigeria.

“Europe invaded Africa to pack our people as slaves to work for them. We now have many people on the streets. We are not making use of them. And many of the insecurity problems come from the streets.”

On planned fuel subsidy removal, Daniel, known as OGD, said: “The solution is blocking loopholes, crushing the mafia and reducing leakages.”

To him, presidential zoning should be enshrined “in our Constitution”.

He said power rotation cannot be jettisoned because it is always on the front burner of political discourse across the zones.

Daniel also reflected on secession agitations by some individuals and groups in some parts of the country, urging the government to engage the agitators.

“Zoning has become part of the moving spirit of the country’s political space. It should be encouraged.
“Around 1978/79, when the NPN came with zoning, we thought it was a lazy concept. Nigeria is unique. We must look at the uniqueness and diverse nature of our country. Zoning should be enshrined into the constitution.”

The party chieftain, who noted separatist agitations, said agitators clamouring for equity, fairness and justice should be engaged by the government.

He stressed: “The entire Yoruba nation is united and they know what they want in this country. Ordinarily, nobody wants to pull out of Nigeria. Our people are united in their aspiration.

“The extremists are doing what they are doing because they feel it is the way to go. The expectations of our people are equity, fairness and justice. Moderates are calling for the re-writing of the 1999 Constitution. They should be properly engaged.”

Daniel supported the Southern Governors’ Asaba Resolution on open grazing ban, adding that they deserved solidarity.

Justifying his defection to the APC, the former governor said the decision was dictated by his followers.

He also said that he decided in good conscience that it was better to support the 2019 APC governorship candidate in Ogun State, Governor Dapo Abiodun, instead of the late Senator Buruji Kashamu of the PDP.

Daniel, who lamented the worsening security situation in the country, said “it is a joint responsibility. Our responsibility is to join hands to find solutions”.

He reflected on his backing for power shift to Yewa Division when he was governor, urging that, to get the slot, the Ogun West Senatorial Zone would require more than the sloganeering of “it is our turn.”


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