From Judex Okoro, Calabar
The former Nigerian Ambassador to Uganda, HRH Etubom Nya Asuquo, has decried the new consensus arrangement being adopted by some political parties, saying it is not a welcome development in our democracy.
Asuquo, a former member of the House of Representatives, representing Calabar Municipality/Odukpani federal constituency, said rather than go for consensus in selecting who leads us at every level, it is better for Nigerians to go for consensus in terms of how we are to be a governed as a nation.
Speaking at the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) Week. Calabar Branch, with the theme, “We, the People: Agenda For National Consensus”, Asuquo, who is also a member of the Obong of Calabar Traditional Council and Chairman of the occasion, faulted the constitution for not providing roles for traditional rulers
He said the non-provision of specific roles for traditional rulers is actually affecting their operations in their various domains and that has made the country keep having problems, especially in the area of security.
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‘I am worried at the way consensus arrangements are being packaged by some political parties in terms of selecting who rules the country. It is not possible and above all not even welcome in a democracy. But it is possible to reach a consensus in Nigeria in terms of how we want to be governed,’ he said.
‘All of us know that traditional rulers are the closest to the people, the downtrodden, people in the villages and so forth. Without giving the traditional rulers a role, the constitution is not holistic and that is why we keep having the problem of insecurity.
‘How are traditional rulers expected to work to prevent insecurity when they have no role? I hope the national assembly looks into this as they are working on amending the constitution as it is absolutely important they are given roles. The theme for this year is apt because the bar and bench are the taproots of the society.’
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He expressed optimism that with the quality of lectures and the resource persons, justice will be done to the topic and they will synthesise all the conclusions and proffer workable solutions to the nation’s problems.