STATE OF THE NATION: With Coleman Edrah On True Federalism

Edrah Coleman
Edrah Coleman

It’s a pleasure having you at the state of the nation today, can you tells about yourself?

My name is Coleman Edrah. I am a marketer, a teacher, a farmer and a public affairs analyst from cross River state. And i am highly delighted to be on the STATE OF THE NATION.

The nation today is full of insecurity, uncertainty, unemployment, what do you think could be the solution?

The current state of insecurity in our great Country is really unfortunate  and must be condemned by every right thinking Nigerian. The spate of kidnappings, armed robbery, arson and other violent crimes is not  good for our development. In an atmosphere of insecurity, there is uncertainty. No economy will grow in such an atmosphere. The high level of unemployment prevailing in Nigeria is a result of  insecurity. Foreign investment is not coming into the country to create jobs for our increasing population. Militant Regional groups are springing up and agitating for succession. All these are happening because the central police of Nigeria cannot control crime throughout the Country. The Nigeria police needs to be decentralized. States should be allowed to establish their own police.

Can you tell us what True Federalism is all about?

True Federalism is allowing states to enjoy autonomy and control their own Resources. In a true federal country, Security, education, health, works and other departments are under the jurisdiction of states.  For our Nation to  enjoy peace and progress, we must grant our states the desired autonomy. Nigeria is said to be a federation on papers. What we are actually practicing is a Unitary system where resources are taken from rich naturally endowed states to develop the less endowed states. 

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What makes you think it’s the solution to the nations uncertainty?

True federalism is the solution to most of the problems threatening the unity of our great Nation. Violent agitations by youths from South East, South South, South West and other geopolitical Zones are increasing because of lack of trust in the prevailing system. The federal government is wielding too much power. States needs to be allowed to control their resources and fund their securities. Natural resources are not evenly distributed. Some states are richer than the others.  A situation where oil revenue  from Bayelsa is used to build infrastructures in Sokoto is tantamount to robbing Peter to pay Paul. Nigeria will become the most peaceful and the most developed  country in the world if the Federal government can allow states control their resources and their internal securities. 

Why are the government in power afraid to implement it?

The government in power  is afraid of implementing  true federalism because  it doesn’t favour  the interest of key stakeholders .  For example, president Buhari from Katsina state  is aware that the oil revenue from the Niger Delta region is  critical to the development of his state.  If true federalism is implemented, so many non oil producing states of the federation will be very poor.                         

How then can it be implemented?

True federalism can be implemented by granting more autonomy to the states of Nigeria.                     States should be allowed to control their Natural endowment. Internal Security Should be  left in the hands of States while Defense and external security should be the exclusive  prerogative of the  federal government .                             

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Can you tell Nigerians the benefit of True Federalism?      

The practice of true federalism will encourage rapid development of states and guarantee maximum security in face of competition. Most of the states that are currently waiting cup in hand for federal allocation will be forced to look inward to generate internal revenue.   

Is there any disadvantage of True Federalism?

I don’t know of any disadvantage in implementation of true federalism in a multi ethnic and heterogeneous Country like Nigeria.     

The likes of Obasanjo, Yar’adua and Jonathan did not implement it, do you think president Buhari has the political will to do so?      

Obasanjo and Yar’adua  couldn’t have moved for the implementation of true federalism because  it’s unfavorable to their states and geopolitical zones. I wonder why Goodluck Jonathan couldn’t move for the implementation of true federalism as a son of the oil rich  Niger Delta Region.                                       

President Buhari cannot and will not think of implementing true federalism because it works against his interest and the interest of  the Cabal.                                           

What is your advice to the government in power?

My advice to the Government in power is to grant more autonomy to the states by encourage them to explore their natural advantages and secondly allow states to establish their own police. If these two variables are put in place, Nigeria will become  the greatest and the most peaceful country in the  World.                                       

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2023 is around the corner what is your view on power shift.

PMB is from the Northern part of Nigeria. By 2023, power should be given to the South.                    The 6 geopolitical zones of southern Nigeria should be allowed to compete for power come 2023.          It’s  not a hopeless situation. At the end of every dark tunnel, there must be light. I see a great light in Nigeria .  Breaking away from the great Nigeria family is not the solution. Let’s put our heads together to make Nigeria the greatest country in the World. God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Thank you for your time, we wish to have you again on the state of the nation.

it will be my pleasure.