The founder of Afe Babalola University, Chief Afe Babalola (SAN), has declared that it was the military that planted the seeds of national disintegration and disharmony which the country is currently facing.
He said that the political, socio-economic crisis occasioned by agitation for resource control by the Niger Deltans, secession agitation by some groups in South-East, alleged marginalization by the South-East and South- South and call for restructuring by Yoruba was as a result of military incursion into political space of the country for about thirty years.
He stated these in his paper, entitled, “Nigeria in search of a Nation” presented at the recently held Yoruba Summit christened “Ibadan Declaration” titled “Yoruba Standpoint on Restructuring” a copy of which was obtained by our reporter on Friday in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital.
Babalola said, “It is therefore correct to state that the military and their civilian apologists either by design or by accident have planted in the constitution the seeds of national disintegration and disharmony.
“The allegations of marginalisation and the clamour for confederation constitute the harvest of the constitution fashioned ny the military.
“The emergence of the military on the political scene and their uneventful stay for about thirty years dealt a fatal blow to the existing federal structure in Nigeria.
Babalola, however, advised in his paper that the need to go back to the 1960 Independence and 1963 Republic constitutions can never be over emphasised with the current situation in the country.
He said the call to return to the glorious days of Independence and Republic constitutions was necessary because none of the constitutions fashioned out by the military reflected the wishes of the people.
“None of the constitution fashioned out by the military reflects the ideas which ideas which informed the making of 1954, 1960 and 1963 constitutions. What the military did was to by that constitution weaken the component states, destroy or impair their power to develop and sustain themselves.
“We are all witnessing to the misrule and unbridled brigandage of decades of misrule by the military”.
“Our country’s history is replete with the inconvertible fact that Nigeria witnessed her greatest and fastest economic, political, social and educational development during self government and the first republic.
“Each of the regions was fairly autonomous and could legislate over a number of items which have today been taken over by the Federal Government.
“It was during this period that each region began its own regional developmental efforts. There were mutual healthy rivalries to complete for development.”