The Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) True Federalism Committee, Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State, has harped on the need to pay attention to the lingering agitations for restructuring of the country, saying the people’s voice must be heard.
El-Rufai, who led other members of the Committee on a courtesy visit to Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Yakubu Dogara, yesterday said former engagements in the efforts to address some the challenges facing Nigeria excluded critical stakeholders, especially the young people, saying it was one of the reasons the outcomes failed to achieve the needed results.
“There have never been comprehensive discussions on federalism in the country and debates in the past excluded critical stakeholders”, he said, adding that consultative meetings have been held across the country and so the need to engage the National Assembly as one of the key stakeholders in the assignment.
While giving assurances that the APC was fully committed to devolution of power, he commended the National Assembly, especially the House of Representatives, which had put a committee in place to engage stakeholders on the agitations, a development, he explained, was in tune with the assignment given them by the APC.
Responding, Dogara commended the party for raising the Committee. “Thank God we are beginning to take the right steps in the right direction. I’m happy we are working together; we are not working at cross-purposes because at the end, we will be able to take an informed decision”, the Speaker said.
He, however, reiterated that the National Assembly still remains the constitutionally recognised institution saddled with the responsibility of addressing issues related to the structure of the country and so would be ready to receive the outcomes of all engagements.
“The National Assembly is the forum where outcomes of the debates should be channeled for processing”, he said, pledging that they will not let Nigerians down.