Pastor Tunde Bakare has said that restructuring Nigeria can take place without violence.
Bakare, who is the founder of Citadel Global Community Church (CGCC), made this declaration on Friday after a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja.
According to the Serving Overseer of the CGCC, although Nigeria is better off as one nation, such unity must be based on equity, justice, fair play and the rule of law.
Bakare’s statement is a reiteration of his support for the idea of restructuring the country.
Earlier this year, the cleric in one of his State of the Nation addresses was of the opinion that “we have failed to realise that a strong federal government working with strong federating units can guarantee the security and prosperity of the Nigerian people”.
In his view, “we have failed to appreciate the fact that coordinated governance by the different states in each of the geopolitical zones will enhance the security of Nigerians and bring our people out of poverty.
According to him, “this is the heart and soul of restructuring”.
He went on to explain that restructuring does not mean the dismemberment of the Nigerian state.
“It is not an attack on Nigerian unity. It does not mean disadvantaging any section of the country,” the CGCC founder explained.
While briefing newsmen on Friday, Bakare also explicitly criticized the debate over power rotation describing it as politically immature.
He noted that the idea of zoning has never benefited the region where the power was resident.
He said selecting a leader should be more about what the candidate has to offer. regardless of region.
The cleric called on the best of Nigerians to present themselves for future elections.
‘Adopt electronic voting’
Pastor Bakare also called for the adoption of electronic voting to ensure that no Nigerian of eligible voting age, including those in the Diaspora, are disenfranchised.
He hailed the Senate for reversing its decision on the electronic transmission of election results, adding that the country should go one step further and adopt electronic voting.
On whether he would contest the 2023 presidential election, he said his plans have been made known to the president alone.
He further noted that he would contest if God and Nigerians wants him to.
Pastor Bakare, who has recently criticized the current administration, was Buhari’s running mate under the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in 2011.
A few days ago, the cleric asked President Buhari to do away with the 1999 constitution, saying it is a great inhibitor of the nation’s progress.
“Mr Gorbachev, tear down this wall! Mr. Gorbachev eventually did, and Germany is better off for it today.
“In the same spirit, I say to President Muhammadu Buhari: Mr President, stop passing the buck to the National Assembly.
“Tear down this inhibiting concoction of a constitution; tear it down so we can build a truly great nation,” Bakare said at what he said might be the last state of the nation address from his church auditorium.
According to the founding pastor of the CGCC, “this is one enduring legacy” that the Buhari-led administration can still secure before their time in power draws to a close.
Bakare further argued that if President Buhari does thrash the 1999 constitution, present and unborn generations of Nigerians will remember him for it and write his name in gold when the history of the period is written.
On the other hand, he stated that if the president fails to heed the call, then, “history will record that you failed to rise to the occasion and squandered a great opportunity”.
Throwing more light on the need to get rid of the 1999 constitution, Pastor Bakare asserted that the constitution was erroneous to say the unity of the nation was not negotiable.