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Ex Oyo Deputy Speaker Warns Over 2023 Polls

Former Oyo Deputy Speaker Pastor Femi Emmanuel has warned Nigerians against focusing more on 2023 presidential election without resolving fundamental constitutional issues.

He said the 2023 elections, like others in the past, would not change the fortunes of Nigeria for good except the needful is done.

Speaking in Ibadan at a parley ahead of the Living Spring Chapel International 2022 World Lifting Conference, which was part of activities marking the 29th year anniversary of the church, Emmanuel said that none of the major players has what it takes to redeem the country under the current warped and lopsided 1999 Constitution.

Emmanuel, who is the Presiding Pastor of the Church, urged the Houses of Assembly not to pass the ongoing constitution amendment bill.

He argued what the country needs is not an amendment to the 1999 Constitution but a complete one that would have referendum and voice of the people.

“The heat is on for the upcoming 2023 elections, but in my sincere view, as a person who has been involved in Nigeria’s political affairs up to being elected as the Deputy Speaker of Oyo State House of Assembly between 1992 and 1993, election is not our priority now as a nation. I am not just a pastor, I have been in the political trenches and I know how Nigerian democracy works.

“It is like putting the cart before the horse and postponing evil days. What our country needs now is a rearrangement to establish fairness, justice and equity, the country has been operating a unitary system of government, which we deceptively called democracy. Our constitution is not a democratic constitution. It is like a military decree.”

“The question we should ask ourselves is: where did we sit to agree as a people to make Nigeria 36 States? Who divided Nigeria into 774 local councils? This happened on the table of a military general that came to govern Nigeria.”

The cleric said that the country called Nigeria “died in 1966 when the military took over and the Constitution was suspended and replaced by a unitary system, adding that the crux of Nigeria’s problem is the Constitution where one ethnic group feels superior to others.

“1999 Constitution is a fraud. The Nigerian constitution as earlier stated forced the dominance of a particular ethnic group over and above the other ethnic groups in the country. It has more states and local councils, as well as more seats in the Senate and House of Representatives. By that fraud, no bill passes in the National Assembly if it is not in favour of the dominant group.

“No State House of Assembly should pass the so-called amendment to the constitution. Fraud cannot be amended, our constitution is a fraud, it is a lie and there are so many lies told in that constitution that have to be jettisoned.”

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