THE FIFTEEN NATIONS SOLUTION FOR NIGERIA
Your six nations' solution to the Nigerian dilemma is an interesting take on the matter; it is on the right path. However, it would not have solved the problem since within the six nations would be many nations! If you mix some groups in a nation you would still have conflict (say, the Ijaw and Efik, your proposed Greater Niger Delta, would still have inter ethnic conflicts).
I have proposed a fifteen nations solution as follows: Igbo Nation; Yoruba Nation ; Edo Nation; Efik Nation; Ijaw Nation; Hausa Nation; Fulani Nation; Kanuri Nation; Tivi/Plateau Nation; Urhobo/Ishikiri Nation; (and five other nations composed of the amalgamation of smaller tribes that are sufficiently alike to each other).
These fifteen nations would then form a real federation of Nigeria. Each nation would be totally responsible for its domestic affairs, owns its natural resources, manages its education etc. (My model is based on Switzerland where the three main ethnic groups: Germans, French, and Italian each has its own area of control. Your proposed model is more or less like the former Yugoslavia’s system: Serbia/Kosovo, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia, Slovenia, and Macedonia that formed the six republics within the country with rotating presidents…Tito left that legacy behind him believing that it would solve the problem of ethnic conflicts; Tito had ruled all of them with an iron hand; however, as we have seen the system did not work and war ensued in the 1990s and the six tribes eventually went their separate ways …Czechoslovakia divided into its two tribal areas: Czech/Bohemia and Slovakia, peacefully.)
Each nation contributes 20% of its net annual revenue (from personal income taxes, sales taxes, property taxes, corporate taxes etc…each individual and corporation must pay twenty percent of his annual income to state tax; sales taxes is not to exceed ten percent) to the Central Government, and with that money the federal government operates the functions delegated to it, such as the military, foreign affairs, maintaining federal roads, post offices and other identifiable federal functions.
Each nation would have a unicameral legislature of fifty members elected for five years (six terms limit), a premier (who is a member of the legislature but who selects non legislator- technocrats to run the ministries of the state and report to him and he reports to the legislature); an independent judiciary headed by a state Supreme Court of thirteen judges, one the chief judge…an appellate court and district courts).
At the central level a Federal Unicameral Legislature with equal number of legislators from each nation (ten from each nation), who serve five year terms (with six terms limit). The national legislature selects a prime minister (the leader of the party with the highest number of seats in the legislature) and he selects his ministers from outside the legislature (technocrats, experts in each area that ministries exist), a ceremonial President that is elected for ten years, (one term); an independent judiciary headed by a Federal Supreme Court, with the usual three tier levels (District, Appellate and a Supreme Court composed of thirteen members one the chief justice; the justices selected by the ministry of justice for they have to be civil servants who got to the top by merit, examinations, not political appointment).
I believe that this system will work for Nigeria. It would become a boiler plate, a template of sorts for all multi-ethnic African countries to copy (Zimbabwe, for example, has two main ethnic groups, Shona and Ndebele hence should have two nations; South Africa has ten nations: Zulu, Xhosa, Soto, Pando, Koi San etc hence ten nations).
In the long run the nations of the current African nation-States would form the expected Africa Federation of Nations, AFN (composed of five hundred nations with each large tribe a nation and the smaller tribes lumped into nations). The central government of Africa would then replace the current national governments (with a unicameral legislature of five hundred members, a member from each nation, serving five terms, six terms limit, a prime minister who is a legislator but who selects technocrats to run his ministries etc, a ceremonial president who is elected for one tern years terms, a supreme court and appellate court and District court etc). This system will work for Africa.
Africans have talked a lot about been burdened by what Europeans did: lump disparate ethnic groups into countries hence create conflicts for them. Africans talk too much and do too little; they lack leadership! Leaders solve problems; do something, whereas school boys merely complain about their countries terrible situation
It is now time for Africans to become problem solvers. The solution to their problems is easy (as shown above); it just takes determined will to solve them. Establish a realistic constitution for Africa and then embark on industrialization and modernization of the continent and bring it to par with the rest of the world in one century.
We should stop complaining and blaming Europeans for our fallen house and, instead, seize the opportunity to build the type of house we want. Problems are supposed to be opportunities to do something, and not just talk about them!
It is clear that different ethnic groups are sometimes too different that they need not be in a forced association. The Igbo and the Hausa, for example, are as different as night and day, and have no business being in the same political unit. But they can be good neighbors.
Let each ethnic group develop according to its character. Those who want to industrialize and be at the level of Japan in a few decades, as I am sure Igbos want to be, are allowed to do so, whereas those who want to return to sixth century Arabic feudal society, as Muslims, apparently, want to via their Sharia law, are allowed to return to that primitive ways, undisturbed.
To each its own desired life styles.
By Ozodi Thomas Osuji
(1) *The National Question: Towards A New Constitutional Order* - Anthony Enahoro
"On the basis of these principles and criteria, the MNR suggests that the starting number of regions, each of which should itself be a federation, should be 18, of which 12 will be mono-nationality regions, which should be:
1. *Ibibio Federation*
2. *Ijaw Federation*
3. *Igbo Federation*
4. *Urhobo Federation*
5. *Edo Federation*
6. *Yoruba Federation*
7. *Nupe Federation*
8. *Tiv Federation*
9. *Gbagyi Federation*
10. *Hausa Federation*
11. *Fulah Federation*
12. *Kanuri Federation*
*The Other Six (6) Of The Regions Should Be Multi-Nationality Regions, As Follows*
(i) A federation comprising minority nationalities in Cross River and Akwa Ibom states (i.e. Eket, Annang, Oron, Ibeno, Efik, Ejagbam, Korop, Boki, Bakwara, Yakurr, Yala).
(ii) A federation comprising the minority nationalities in Rivers and Bayelsa states (i.e. Ikwerre, Etchei, Ekpeeye, Engeni, Ogba, Eleme, Ndoni, Ogoni, and Andoni).
(iii) A federation comprising the minority nationalities in Delta State (i.e. Ika, Ndokwa, Warri, Isoko).
(iv) A federation comprising the minority nationalities in West Middle Belt, i.e. Zuru, Kambari, Bariba, Bussa, Karekare, Ngizim, Angamo, Bola, Funne, etc.
(v) A federation comprising the minority nationalities in Central Middle Belt, i.e.: (a) Ebira Group: Ebira, Uku, Ebira-Ugu, Ebira-Panda, Etuno-Igarra, Ebira Mozun, Bassa-Nge. (b) Igala Group (c) Upper Benue Group: Alago Eggon, Gwandara, Mada, Kakanda, Mighili, Bassa-Komu, Ninzom, Arum etc.
(vi) A federation comprising the minority nationalities in East Middle Belt, i.e. *(a)* Plateau Group: Ngas, Berom, Afezere Taroh, Goemai, Nmavo - Jukun, Amu, Pyem, Youn etc. *(b)* Taraba Group: Chamba, Jukun, Kuteb, Mambila, Kona, Kunni, Kaanab, Ndoro, Abakwa, Mumuye, Yububen, etc.
*(c)* Savanna Group: Bura, Tangale - Waja, Bachama, Manghi, Kilba, Yungu, Mwanna, Bwazza Mbula, etc. *The underlying principle of the suggested structure is that all the nationalities, regardless of size, are autonomous federating units of equal value to the whole. In this spirit, the divide between the nationalities suggested to be Regions in their own right and those which are suggested should co-operate to form a Region, is to be clearly established by nothing more than pragmatism, having regard to the tasks, responsibilities and resources expected of a Region*
(2) *Chinweizu 2005: Reconstruction of Nigeria:Four Delusions on our Strategic Horizon*
(3) *The Structure Of Nigeria A Proposal By Edookpamakhin [AN Association Of Edo Nationals]*
(4) *Benin And The Midwest Referendum* *(1)*
*Benin And The Midwest Referendum* *(2)*
*Benin And The Midwest Referendum* *(3)*
(5) *Politics of numbers: the Wazobia lies*
(6) *Towards an Edo Agendum By Professor Omo Omoruyi, mni*
(8) *The Amalgamation Of Nigeria Was A Fraud*
(9) *African Tribalists, European Nationalists, And The Quest For New States In Africa*
(10) *33 Reasons Why Southern Nigerians are Fools - and the Northerners are not*
(11) *A Word Of Caution To Nigerian Ethnic Separatists*
(12) *Ethnic Nationalities And The Nigerian State*
(13) *The Impossibility And Dangers Of A Continued “One Nigeria”*
(15) Midwest State And The Future Of Nigerian Federalism-Midwest History Month 1999