The presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, has blamed the insecurity in the country on lack of focused leadership and reformed security governance.
Speaking at Chatham House in London on Monday, the former governor of Anambra State proposed a reform of the security structure in the country where the federal, state and local governments would have policing structures.
Obi also highlighted the need for institutions to be able to provide strong leadership, and coordination capabilities, and engage collaboratively with all relevant stakeholders to mutually reinforce values.
He said, “This forms the first and most important thrust of my governance priorities without which the rest may not be achieved. To secure Nigeria, end banditry and insurgency, and unite our dear nation to manage our diversity, such that no one is left behind.
“The growing insecurity in Nigeria is not because the enemy is formidable; it is rather because of lack of focused leadership, ineffective security governance structure and poor coordination from the centre. All these need to be addressed by first projecting strong leadership signals that allow both state and non-state actors to be mobilised around a single vision.
“Then, by pursuing a robust reform of the security governance structure with a strong coordinating mechanism that assures that all levels of government – federal, state, and local (with a three-level policing structure) – are aligned with strong collaboration with partners from both the private sector and development groups to provide the required services and deliver results for every Nigerian.
“Once this is done, it is also important to have a single, clear, coherent, and consistent communication system to keep the government accountable, and citizens engaged and involved in the development process.”
Obi also lamented the humungous debt accumulated by the Federal Government for consumption which he pledged to restructure.
“Nigeria has borrowed for consumption. Nigeria in 2016 had a GDP per capita of 2,550 dollars. We were owing about N15 trillion. Today, with the Central Bank of Nigeria’s ways and means, we are owing about N75 trillion. So, we have grown that debt by about 400%, but our per capita is 2,000. That means that the money we borrowed was thrown away. So that is what I am going to revamp.
“We will restructure our debt as it is today. We will restructure it through the long term, to be able to pay it. And as I said here, no more borrowing for consumption. We will still borrow, people will see it, we will be transparent, it will be for investments, and that is what we intend to do.
“Countries have been in this situation before; we are not in a situation where other countries have not passed before. It is a question of showing leadership, and we will be able to solve it,” he added.
During his address, the LP presidential hopeful, unveiled his plans for economic growth, noting that if elected, his administration will pursue an agricultural revolution across the country, especially in the northern part.
Obi also said he was honoured that the youths trusted him to lead their struggle to transform Nigeria’s politics and restart the engine of economic growth and social stability of the country.
“We count ourselves honoured to be trusted, especially by the youths, to lead this democratic evolution and we are deeply pledged to do so with sincerity, accountability and unquenchable love and desire for a better Nigeria. We are simply the symbol of Nigerian youths’ struggle to reverse this ugly trend that keeps driving them into social anaemia, despair and rejection of their country,” he added.