2015: Participants Must Address All Critical Issues, Says Uranta

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 2015 elections may not hold in Nigeria if the National Conference does not make “substantial conclusions” before then, a prominent social commentator and member of the Presidential Advisory Committee on the National Conference, Tony Uranta, has said.

Uranta, who is also the Executive Secretary of the Nigerian National Summit Group (NNSG) made the declaration during the week at an event organised by the Gani Adams-led Oodua Peoples Congress (OPC) to mark the 21st anniversary of the cancellation of the June 12, 1993, presidential election won by the late Moshood K.O. Abiola.

Responding to the theme of the event, ‘June 12, A Solution Model For 2015 Electoral Challenges’, he further said there would be no election in the country in 2015 if the country does not succeed in creating a new constitution for itself.

“I am aware that the theme of today’s lecture revolves around the 2015 elections…but permit me to inform you that there will be no 2015 elections if there is no substantial conclusion of the National Conference.

“If the conference continues on the path it seems to have started taking, the path where certain delegates from certain spheres of Nigeria are disregarded, where positions and ideas are mocked at and waved aside…if we do not succeed in creating a brand new constitution for this country, if we do not bring about a fully holistic and thorough re-engineering of this nation, we shall not see 2015 as one country, he added.

Uranta also said it was a ruse to think that the Boko Haram insurgency is only a Northern affair, arguing that though it may be manifesting at the moment in the North-east, but “Boko Haram is tantamount to national insecurity."

“Why is there Boko Haram? It is because of the lopsidedness of the structure of this country,” he added. He argued that the election of 1993 was not so much because Nigerians loved Abiola or because Babangida was the best organiser, but that it was because Nigerians were united in their determination to remove the military at that time.

“Now, we also must unite in our determination to restructure this country,” he told his audience.

Uranta said he was proud of the OPC and Gani Adams, adding that the Ijaw part of Nigeria, where he hails from, had copied some of the operations of the group.

He said the OPC, through Gani Adams, is now an organised system sensitising the people of Yorubaland and bringing the power needed by the area.

“It is time for you to start insisting and being heard as insisting that certain things must be done right and certain things must not be accepted. If your leaders are insulted or mistreated at the national conference and you see it, get up and say so," he added.

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