Adesina proposes change of name to ‘United States of Nigeria’, gives reasons

The President, African Development Bank Group, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, has proposed a change of name from the Federal Republic of Nigeria to ‘The United States of Nigeria.’

Adesina said this in a statement by his Special Adviser on Industrialisation, Prof. Banji Oyelaran-Oyeyinka, on Saturday, March 30.

Adesina made the call in a lecture he delivered as the recipient of the 2024 Obafemi Awolowo Prize for Leadership, titled, ‘Making a New Nigeria: Welfarist Policies and People-Centred Development.’

He explained that a change to the ‘United States of Nigeria’ would change the relational mindset between the states and Abuja, stating that the fulcrum would be the states, while the centre would support them, not lord over them.

“We must be audacious! Instead of the Federal Government of Nigeria, we could think of the United States of Nigeria. The old would give way to the new,” Adriana was quoted to have said.

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“We would change the relational mindset between the states and Abuja: the fulcrum would be the states, while the centre would support them, not lord over them.

“With good governance, better accountability systems, and zero tolerance for corruption, more economically stronger constituent states would emerge! We would unleash massive wealth across the states. A New Nigeria would arise! To do so, we will need all of us, not some of us.

“From our forgotten rural villages to our boisterous and dynamic urban areas. From the sparks of desire in the eyes of our children to the lingering hope in the hearts of our youths.

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“From the yearnings of our women and mothers and our men and fathers for a better tomorrow, and the desires of the old that our end would be better than our past. From the hardworking street vendors and small businesses to the largest business conglomerates, we must create a movement of hope.”

He added that “the achievement of economically viable entities and the viability of the national entity requires constitutional changes to devolve more economic and fiscal powers to the states or regions. The stronger the states or regions, the stronger the federated units.”

Adesina reiterated that to get out of the economic problems, there is a compelling need for the restructuring of Nigeria.

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He said restructuring should not be driven by political expediency but by economic and financial viability.

“Economic and financial viability are the necessary and sufficient conditions for political viability,” he said.

“If there was one attribute that defined Chief Obafemi Awolowo, and there were many, it would be his visionary boldness. He went where others feared or failed to go. In the process, decades later, his footprints remain in the sands of time. Likewise, today, in Nigeria, we need men and women with vision, who are willing to take bold decisions.”

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