Echoes of Reform: Northern Elders Push for Immediate Change in Nigeria’s System of Governance

by Ohepo Ohepo

At a recent book launch in Abuja for “Court and Politics” by Umar Ardo, Abdullahi Ango, the Northern Elders Forum Convener, expressed a critical view of Nigeria’s current state. Representing the former vice-chancellor of Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Ango pointed out the country’s failure in productivity and resource management.

He emphasized that both the government and the citizens have let the nation down, particularly highlighting the inadequacy of Nigeria’s power generation, which stands at a mere 4,000 megawatts for a population exceeding 220 million. In contrast, he noted that the Masjid al-Haram in Saudi Arabia requires 18,000 megawatts of electricity daily, illustrating the extent of Nigeria’s shortfall.

Ango criticized the presidential system of governance in Nigeria as overly expensive and resource-intensive. He advocated for a return to the drawing board, suggesting a need for a thorough reassessment of the country’s governance structure to ensure efficiency and sustainability.

The event, which focused on the intersections of politics, democracy, and law, was described as an opportunity for reflection on Nigeria’s collective failures and a search for viable solutions.

Shehu Gabam, the National Chairman of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), and Dakas Dakas, the book reviewer and former Commissioner for Justice in Plateau, shared similar sentiments.

They underscored the importance of addressing the challenges within Nigeria’s judicial and political systems and the critical need for reform. The book “Court and Politics,” with its comprehensive examination of Nigeria’s political and legal landscapes, was praised for shedding light on the intricate relationship between the judiciary and politics in the country.

The author, Umar Ardo, a former Special Adviser on Research and Strategy to former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, expressed gratitude to the attendees for their engagement and support.

The discussions at the book launch highlighted the urgency of collective efforts to address the systemic issues facing Nigeria and the importance of fostering a more democratic and efficient governance model for the future.

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