University of Ibadan Dons has backed the need for political and economic restructuring of Nigeria.
The experts noted that Nigeria as presently structured is faulty which can hardly bring any meaningful developments to all and sundry.
Renown Political Scientist, Professor Adigun Agbaje and another Professor of Economics Ademola Ariyo made the submissions at a Seminar on the 2017 Budget organised by the Department of Economics, University of Ibadan under the Headship of Professor Kassey Garba.
The duo called for a more active civil society to track the process of budget making and its implementation in Nigeria to ensure that Nigeria are not short-changed.
While noting that the present structure of budgeting cannot produce the desired results, Professor Ariyo stated that Nigeria lacks the culture of planning while coming with a budget that does not contain the inputs of Nigerians concerning their needs.
In his presentation on “2017 Budget: matters Arising” Professor Agbaje, noted that the process of making budget in Nigeria is the major driver of corruption “because items are deliberately written into the budget which is not meant for Nigerians but only for those who have access to governmental powers.”
While noting the Nigeria presidency has been weakened by the very ailing president Mohammadu Buhari, Agbaje averred that Nigeria needs a judicial review to revisit the powers and functions of government for effective democratic governance.
“You go to an office and you see Air Conditioner of 15 years ago and this are things already inserted in the budget to be changed every year. People talk the presidency.
“Presidency is a variable, it is a constant. The Presidency under General Obasanjo was not the type witnessed under ailing Musa Yardua, and with due respect, the apparently unprepared Goodluck Jonathan and now under very ailing Buhari.
“The reality is that the presidency has been weakened. The provisions are the same but it is about the drama and the effect that the personality and conviction of Mr President bestows.
“We lack experience in democratic governance, barganining and decision making. Today we have extremely weak institution; INEC that is not independent. We really don’t have the institutional frame.
“The personality and the vision of the president and those in the presidency are very important. If the vision is parochial and laden with corruption, we are not going to get any meaningful budget or policy. There is also capacity gap in terms of willingness to do what is right in the area of budget implementation.
“There is a whole lot of shenanigans going on within the executive and the legislative arm. There is need for judicial review on the powers and functions of organs of government. We need to have efficient and functional institutions. At a time 10million dollars left Nigeria for South Africa with all our institutions (Central Bank, SSS, DSS) but the moment it entered South Africa somebody was checked.
“That is an example of institutionalisation of effective. Can we have the kind practice of in South Africa where the president was asked to pay back monies used in construction of his private residence? It is possible if we empower institutions to work in Nigeria”