Former Governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, has faulted the kind of democracy practised in Nigeria as a system that cannot bring about the best in all spheres of our national interest.
Speaking as the Special Guest of Honour at the 2nd Annual Lecture of a media outfit, Freedom Online, held at the Alvan Ikoku Hall, Radisson Blu, Ikeja, Lagos on Thursday, Daniel lamented that Nigeria is still operating a system that has been in practice since 1960 without a change which, he opined, cannot bring about any meaningful development.
According to him, no nation can thrive on a static ideology, especially in this modern age, with its attendant global evolution in all indices of development.
He said: “That is why our democratic system has to be reviewed by way of restructuring or else it will give more room for constitutional crisis, inequity, mediocrity, injustice and corruption.”
With the collapse of the Berlin Wall and the dropping of the Iron Curtain, the former governor said doors were closed against Communism and Socialism as political ideologies, opening a new vista in the socio-political economy of the respective countries, which paid off as their economies rose tremendously.
Even China, he stated, has joined the fray and is now about the biggest economy in the world.
Daniel said: :What I am saying in essence is that if we continue to practice democracy without a drastic change, it cannot work.
“It will only make people poorer and hopeless.
“This is why progressive minded politicians like myself and political pundits are clamouring for restructuring, which will address the challenges facing us as a nation and proffer meaningful solutions for the betterment of the people.”
On his retirement from partisan politics, Daniel stressed that he thought it is better to leave the stage early enough for the younger generation to come up with fresh ideas and contribute their own quota towards developing the nation instead of the older ones sitting tight and counting years, which most African leaders have been accused of.
He however quipped that he thought he should be praised for this bold step but was surprised when people reacted saying he shouldn’t go into retirement that soon.
The Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, who was represented by Akin Oyebode (Jnr.), delivered the lecture, titled: “Fixing The Economy: Less Politics, More Substance,” which had former Governor of Abia State and Senator-elect, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, as the Chairman.
The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, was the Guest of Honour, while a University don, Prof. Akin Onigbinde, delivered the keynote address.
Dignitaries at the event, which was hosted by the publisher of Freedom Online, Gabriel Akinadewo, included the Aare Ona Kakanfo of Yorubaland, Iba Gani Adams; former Minister of Special Duties, retired Navy Captain Caleb Olubolade; the President of the Guild of Corporate Online Publishers and Publisher of The Eagle Online, Dotun Oladipo; and Nollywood actor, Bolaji Amusan.