Why state governments should be scrapped – Babachir Lawal

Babachir Lawal, a former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), has called for the scrapping of state governments in the country.

Mr Lawal, while addressing newsmen in Abuja on Tuesday, described heads of state governments as parasites who are wasting the nation’s resources.

The former SGF who was speaking on what he expects to change as the National Assembly begins the amendment of the constitution, said if he should have his way, he will only allow two tiers of government -Federal and Local – in the country.

He said there is need to allow the Federal government because some state institutions needs a national outlook while the local government should exist because it is closer to the people.

“I’m not a constitutional expert but i know if I had my way in the setup of this country, the governors in the middle are just parasites that are taking the major share of the resources that are supposed to the go to states, they abuse it,” Lawal said.

“If I had my way, there would be federal government and local governments, such that the resources that are due to the state would be shared equally with the local government at that level and a lot of things will be done.

“In the case of the federal government, we understand why it has to be federal government. There are some institutions that have to be national in itself. The army for example, the federal police must be there, foreign affairs must be there but the states, we can devolve the powers back of the states to the local governments.

“At the local government, they are closer to the people, because they are closer to the people, people are able to monitor them. People are able to get in touch with them, people are able to check their excess if any,” he added.

Lawal also canvassed for the return to the unicameral legislature.

“Another option will be to return back to the parliamentary system, where everybody in the parliament is an elected official that is accounted to the people, one who would be president would have been one the election,” he said.

“The presidential system is so expensive and the presidential system has concentrated power and authority on one person and whoever else he chooses to delegate that authority to.

“In a place like Nigeria where we have different aspirations and different belief systems and different world views, decision making needs to be decentralised,” the former SGF added.