The Governor of the State of Ekiti, dr. Kayode Fayemi, yesterday attributed the rise of separatist movements in the country to frustration stemming from the agitators ’dissatisfaction with the government’s perceived failure to meet their aspirations.
Fayemi spoke on The Morning Show, the leading breakfast program on ARISE NEWS, THISDAY Newspapers and warned those advocating the breakup of Nigeria to drop the campaign because secession will not respond to the various challenges facing the state.
The governor, who is also the chairman of the Forum of Governors of Nigeria (NGF), said that the ruling Congress of All Progressives (APC) did not fully appreciate the seriousness of the problems in the country during the 2015 campaign.
However, he said the country must seek the best solution to its security challenges, including multi-level police policy.
He also called for a different approach to managing the security crisis and other national challenges outside the secessionist campaign.
He said: “Honestly, when you have stress and relaxation in society, you are obliged to find a whole range of answers. Some rational, some irrational, some talking about people’s fears, some opportunistic and rabbit brain. There is no doubt that some of the reactions we have seen will fall into all of these categories.
“People who say these things (secession) say it out of frustration. But I don’t think that’s the solution to the Nigerian situation. I have noted several times that on issues of security and national development, we need to find ways to manage our diversity and differences in this country. “
To the disappointment of Nigerians with the APC and President Muhammadu Buhari to keep their election promises, the governor said the gap between the election promises and the achievements of the APC is due to excessive expectations caused by the election promises.
However, he added that he could not remember that the APC had promised to achieve a value parity between Naira and the US dollar.
He described as a sad fact that the naira has fallen by more than N230 to $ 1 since the APC took power, stressing that this does not bode well for the national economy.
Citing the former governor of New York, Mr. Maria Cuomoa, who once said politicians campaign in poetry but rule in prose, Fayemi said his comments did not mean the party’s unexpected failure, adding that the government had tried in its core areas of promise.
He said: “But you know that there are a lot of exaggerations and there were obviously exaggerated expectations, and maybe we are also to blame for not lowering those exaggerated expectations.
“You know that the popular American politician Mario Cuomo said that you are engaged in poetry and rule in prose, and of course, there were things that were things that did not necessarily leak the way we imagined them while we were campaigning against Nigerians.
“Perhaps what we didn’t do enough was to understand the scope and enormity of the challenge at the time in all its comprehensiveness and coming to duty, we had to deal with it.”
However, he said that the APC government was “a victim of circumstances”, because no one predicted a COVID-19 pandemic that would paralyze the country for more than a year, returning it to a new recession.
As for insecurity in the country, Fayemi said it remains unacceptable whether it happened to a governor like Mr. Samuel Ortom of Benue State, or to innocent children abducted from their schools.
“Governor Ortom is the number one citizen of his country, even then, all the way to an ordinary citizen. We need to react to this quickly. We must ensure that those involved in this are arrested and prosecuted.
“We must demonstrate to Nigerians that Article 14 of our constitution, which speaks of the security and well-being of Nigerians as the primary responsibility of the government, is one that we love very much and that we are all committed to doing whatever it takes to protect our people,” he added.
Fayemi reiterated his call for the transfer of power, which he described as an idea whose time had come.
He said that he proposed that the number of items on the exclusive list in the constitution be transferred to the states and local authorities.
“In matters of economic development, we may have to start considering other ways of managing the diversity and disparities in our country and that the transfer of power is an idea that has come,” he said.
According to him, Nigeria is the only federal state in the world that has a unified police system, just as he called for a multi-level police system that would complement the existing federal police structure.
At COVID-19, he blamed low turnout for vaccine volatility, adding that the state still has a share of over 52,000 doses of vaccine allocated to it.
He stated that, according to the information available to him, the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is available to Nigeria, is safe.
“As for the governors’ forum that influences or directs governors to align, I’m sure you know that the governors ’forum is a voluntary association. Yes, we have mechanisms, moral temptation, grievances, and peer learning to ensure we are doing the right thing and respecting the constitution we have sworn to.
“Ultimately, governors are individuals and they have human rights, and if they decide not to get the vaccine, it is all in their right not to do so. “But as a leader, you have the burden of ensuring that we do not harm our people,” he said.
As for the minimum wage, he said that by no means should the governor of Ekiti state earn the same salary as his colleagues in Rijeka and Lagos, stressing that the same condition exists even in the United States.
At the planned APC national convention, Fayemi said he was optimistic that after the revalidation of membership, there would be departmental, local government and state congresses to be held immediately after Ramadan, which would eventually lead to a national convention, likely in June.