Former governor of Ogun State, Segun Osoba has disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the report of the committee on devolution of power and true federalism set up by the All Progressives Congress.
He disclosed this to State House correspondents after meeting with President Buhari at the Presidential Villa.
The former governor, who was in the Villa to present his book : “Battlelines: Adventures in Journalism and Politics” to Buhari, who featured in it prominently, maintained that the APC even had restructuring as devolution of powers from the federal government to states enshrined in its manifesto.
He appealed to Nigerians, especially statesmen and other activists agitating for restructuring of the country, to be patient with the President and the APC.
According to him,steps would be taken to get the National Assembly to start debate on legalising the relevant aspects of the report.
He said, “But I can tell you, all this noise about restructuring, we APC put devolution of power, true federalism in our manifesto and we’ve moved far from there to where a committee was set up headed by the governor of Kaduna state, Nasir el-Rufai.
“That committee has submitted its report, that report has been presented to us in the caucus and the president was there, the president endorsed the outcome.I want Nigerians to please give us time.
“I hope and pray that at the right time,the government or the party would send that report to National Assembly for debate.
“I would say with all authority that restructuring lies with National Assembly. The president is not a military president, he cannot change anything by decree, sovereignty in Nigeria now is vested in the National Assembly.
“Those agitating for sovereign national conference must go through the National Assembly and unless the national assembly surrenders part of its powers by an Act, there can never be sovereign nations conference.”
According to the former governor, in agitation for referendum, there must be an act of the national assembly to create that referendum, it’s not the president that would by fiat or by executive order, order for referendum.
Explaining further, he said that the process must go through the National Assembly.
“That is why “I plead with our elders: Pa Edwin Clark, Pa Adbanjo, Professor Banji Akintoyin, all across Nigeria, they met the 8th senate and they heard what that National Assembly has done in terms of the review of the constitution.
“They should come back and tell us.We cannot move forward until we recognise the importance and the powers vested in the National Assembly. And for restructuring, let us go through the legal route.”
On politics, Osoba said that he assured President Buhari that the incident that occurred in Ogun state would never ever happen again and the president thanked me.
Speaking further he said that the essence of the visit was to discuss situations in Ogun state and assessment of governor Dapo Abiodun’s administration.
On claims that late Moshood Abiola supported some members of SDP to join Abacha’s military government, he said: “there have been a lot of blackmail and denigration of people. For example, people like Jakande, Onagoruwa, late Alex Ibru, they said that they went and collaborated with Abacha which is not true.
“Solomon Lar, Abubakar Rimi and all others were all in a meeting in MKO Bashorun Abiola’s house on a Sunday after Abacha seized power on November 17, 1993 and kicked us out, the following Sunday we met in Bashorun MKO Abiola’s house .
Asked what advice he has for the president regarding the ministerial list, Osoba said, “I have said it, I am one of the founders of APC, I would not discuss in details because I have access, I am part of the presidency because the president is our president.”
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