Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, has advised political office holders across the country not to wait for anyone before they take needed action.
Makinde who spoke on Saturday while delivering a keynote address at the Conference of Presiding Officers of Nigeria Legislature, entitled ‘Imperatives of Constitutional Amendments.’ He re-echoed his demand for State police and resource control. The event was held at the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), Ibadan.
The governor said that time had come for lawmakers at the National and State Assemblies to have a robust debate on resource control and State police. Makinde added that Nigerians were demanding that their governors play the role of Chief Security Officers of their States. He explained that introduction of State police would help in routing insecurity in the State and across the country.
Makinde said, “We don’t have to wait to be forced to take action. Actions that are taken under pressure and without due consultation often fail to accomplish desired objectives. “And so, it is high time the twin issues of resource control and State police are subjected to robust debate at the Legislature.
“I believe that any Assembly that puts those two issues up for rigorous debate and gives Nigerians a fair deal on all counts will go down in history as the best Assembly ever. If you read the pulse of the nation, you will see that everyone is tired of the status quo, and they are ready for new vistas.
“Nigerians are demanding that their governors play the role of Chief Security Officers of their States. They are asking that the governors be empowered to run the security architecture of their States.
“The various agitations that have rocked our nation over the years, including the more recent EndSARS protests and the rise of banditry and terrorism, are all reasons for the Legislature to pay closer attention to some of the neglected conversations around constitutional amendments and reforms.
“Yes, each new Assembly embarks on constitutional amendments, but the major reforms that will finally address many of the concerns that Nigerians have regarding how our nation works are often ignored.
“These conversations have become like the elephant in the room. Everyone knows it’s there, but no one wants to acknowledge it. But the thing about elephants is that they can’t be ignored for too long, they will move, and when they move, we will be forced to confront them.
“There is an ongoing national conversation about equity and fairness. We have seen the figures that show that it is just a few States that are contributing to the Value Added Tax, which everyone is sharing”.