By Usman Usman Garba
Kano State governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has revealed that the state government is in support of the current review of the nation’s constitution of 1999 (As Amended).
He urged the people of the country to make their contributions with its love and interest first before any other consideration.
He made the statement, while declaring open the public hearing sitting of the Review Committee, from House of Representatives, held at Bristol Palace Hotel, Kano, Wednesday, for Kano, Kaduna, Jigawa and Katsina States.
The committee is chaired by the Leader of the House of Representatives, Alhaji Alhassan Ado Doguwa, who assured the people of the nation that his committee would work hard and round the clock to gather yearnings and aspirations of the public for proper submission to the larger House.
Governor Ganduje said: “There is no better time to hold this event than now, when many Nigerians are yearning for it, looking at the challenges bedeviling the nation.
“Our problem in Nigeria is that, we allow diversity to be a challenge and at the same time fail to utilise such challenge to become opportunity.”
He assured that: “Kano State Government is highly in support of this exercise. This exercise will definitely strengthen our democracy. We are with the conviction that, the outcome of this exercise will come up with solutions.”
The state, according to the governor, will make its contributions on the 17 identified areas in due course through the Secretary to the State Government, urging members of the committee and all other Nigerians “…to make their contributions while putting Nigeria first before any other consideration.”
The governor further challenged that they would not accept calls for dividing the country, reminding that: “United we will remain stronger and more recognised by the global community.”
“We are urging that, this constitution will give regard to our culture, values and our traditional institutions.
“People should also understand that, our diversity is something that is natural/divine. Which means we must try and utilize it for our benefit all,” he urged.
After urging all to have the nation first, at heart, he reminded that: “Study has shown that, in each and every culture, there are good things embedded. So why can’t we put our heads together and utilise those good things for the betterment of our dear nation?” he asked rhetorically.
In his remark, the committee leader, Hon. Doguwa disclosed that the focus of the constitutional review is to secure the participation of all Nigerians and also to have constitution that would make their expectations.
It is obvious that Nigeria as a nation is challenged from all sides by the agitation and the need to address a number of contentious issues as enshrined in the constitution.
With this, Daguwa stated that: “This legislative hearing is an opportunity being accorded to citizens to bring forward all the issues that either have manifested or may manifest in future, and with the inputs of the people, we gradually have begun to move to a ‘Quasi a referendum’ that will restore, guarantee peace and tranquility in our nation by addressing those contentious areas in our supreme democratic document.”
He also emphasized that in a journey of nationhood, people must take advantage of expressing themselves as great nation is built on advancement of shared values, the protection and advancement of mutual interests regardless of their diversity.
Doguwa hinted that: “Our expectations is that, after this exercise nationwide, we will be in position to address most issues in a manner that offers everyone reasonable comfort and above all have an amended constitution that largely incorporates the divergence of opinions, interests and still fully secures our nation and advances our common national aspirations.”
He lastly urged the participants to speak frankly, make their presentations with clarity and above all things to put the interest of their people and nation above any primordial or parochial consideration.