Retired President of the Delta State Area Customary Court, Miakpo Emiaso, yesterday, urged political leaders in the country to renegotiate Nigerians’ terms of staying together, warning that “a forced union is bound to implode no matter how long it takes to happen”
He said: “What will keep the people together is justice, equity and fair play, which are currently missing in Nigeria but can be freely and willingly negotiated into being.”
Delivering the Independence Day lecture of the Ashaka Reading Club entitled: ‘That The Labours Of Our Heroes Past Shall Not Be In Vain’ at Ashaka, Ndokwa East Local Government Area of the State, Emiaso said: “Today’s leaders in Nigeria must do nothing to bequeath to children yet unborn a country pregnant with an implosion.
“No one section should arrogate exclusive ownership of Nigeria to itself and attempt to lord it over the rest of the country.”
While lamenting that almost every politician in “Nigeria today is gravely deficient in nationalism,” he said: “Unless and until the fundamentally lopsided federalism is cured, Nigeria’s progress will remain stagnated in utter disappointment to our founding fathers.
“To cure it, Nigerians must talk. The Nigerian state must be renegotiated. The amalgamation document itself had a life span of a hundred years which expired in 2014. It has lapsed and it must be revisited.
“A renegotiation does not necessarily lead to a disintegration of the country. It only leads to a spelling out of agreed terms under which the various nations, which constitute the country are willing to remain together under one flag as a nation. This is an imperative.
“Such talking, dialogue or renegotiation is to be preferred to the continued mutual suspicion pervading the present forced amalgamated arrangement where no one section is satisfied that it is not being marginalised.
“As a country, all the nations constituting same must walk together. The various nations in Nigeria are not now walking together. They are not agreed on any point.
“And how can they be agreed if they do not talk to each other? They can only be agreed from negotiating since an agreement is always a product of a negotiated arrangement which starts with talking to each other.”
Earlier , President of the Ashaka Reading Club, Mr. Chukudi Asaka, said the body was set up to revive the reading culture and initiate public conversation on topical issues in Nigeria.