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NASS urged to restore monarchs’ powers

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By Timothy Akintola

TYB foundation urges reenacting roles of traditional rulers as insecurity looms.

Nigeria’s social space has and is still being devastated by reoccurring cases of Insecurity threats such as Terrorism, civil unrests, Kidnapping and overt Banditry. As a result of this increased insecurity rate that has ravaged the country, government of various countries continue to warn their citizens against traveling to Nigeria. As such, this rampancy of this menace have socially and economically affected the development of the country. Numerous reports over the last months have punctuated the continued growth in the rate of insecurity across the country and despite the consistent assurances from the Federal Government as to curbing this menace, there has been a significant prevalence in the this problem.

In light of the increase in the rate of insecurity, different expert opinions have surfaced as to measures to enact for curbing this menace. One of the valid opinions given to salvage the Security situation was by the Tukur Yusuf Buratai Humanity Care Foundation which recently urged the National Assembly to consider re-enacting the roles of traditional leaders in matters that concerns Religion, justice, security and other ancillary issues as established in the Nigerian constitution.

Influence of social media, detrimental to cultural development.

A statement issued by Ibrahim Dahiru Danfulani, Sadaukin Keffi, the National Coordinator of the foundation, the role of the present constitution in relegating the traditional institutions to the background was pointed out. He recalled that the decrees of military heads of state such as Ironsi’s 1966 Unitary Government Decree, Gowon’s 1967 Local Government Reform Decree and Obasanjo’s 1976 Local Government Reform Decree were responsible for stripping traditional rulers of their powers and granting these responsibilities to the local government champions.

He stated that prior to the 1976 Local Government Reform, Nigeria witnessed immense progress, Peace and harmony, as well as decent traditions and cultures. He pointed out that today, the influence of Social Media and unrestricted content which are detrimental to the development of our cultures and traditions have continually abetted the subversion of our values. He noted that Nigerians had to be conscious of the fact that subverting the values of Culture was to make any sovereign nation weak and eventually collapse.

Roles of traditional rulers not recognized by the 1999 constitution.

Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai (rtd), the grand patron of the foundation noted his observation of modern Nigeria’s origin was shaped on the basis of its political, social and economic roots of Nigeria’s kingdoms, empires and chiefdoms which had been established before the advent of colonialism. On further expounding the systemic traditional values, he noted that these traditional roles were administered by Emirs, Obas and Obis. Importantly, it was noted that these traditional rulers were endowed with authorities that helped ensure peace and less inflict around the communities, giving criminals no hiding place. With the traditional rulers, he noted that peace and progress were achieved.

General Buratai stated that now, the traditional rulers had no legal or constitutional backing to enhance responsibilities within their communities, as they are not even recognized by the 1999 constitution. He regarded this as an immense departure from other constitutions that recognized the responsibilities of the traditional rulers and assigned roles to them such as maintaining peace and order within their communities, and making it easier for the efforts of the police and military forces. He indicated that the foundation was in full support of the position of the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria and urged for traditional rulers to be assigned with conflict and security management responsibilities across their communities.

Lawmakers urged to support the position of traditional rulers.

The Tukur Buratai Humanity Care Foundation also indicated its agreement with the traditional rulers regarding the constitutional provision that allows each state to enact laws to cater for its own specific matters as related to traditional rulers in their various states. Buratai however commended the Senate Constitution Review Committee, urging lawmakers both on the national and state levels to further support the position of the council of traditional rulers of Nigeria. He also urged politicians to abide by the electoral laws for the impending elections.


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