Former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar says Nigeria
is currently at a crossroads as poverty,
unemployment, inflation, infant mortality and other
social vices are on the increase.


He, therefore, called on Nigerians to unite in the
demand for true federalism.
Atiku said this while delivering his speech at the
formal public presentation of the Daily Stream
newspaper in Abuja on Thursday.
He said, “A huge pall of pessimism hangs over a
section of the citizenry, and the ranks of those who
harbour real doubt about the future of the country
swell by the day.

“The country is truly at a crossroads, and things are
made worse by the cocktail of economic, social and
political problems which we have had to contend
with, and which add to the abysmally low
estimation of our country even by its own citizens.”
The former Vice-President recalled that life was
better in the First Republic because each region
was allowed to grow at its own pace while the
Federal Government was weaker.

Atiku, however, noted that following the creation of
states, the Federal Government became very
powerful while the federating units became poor,
thereby, deepening poverty among the populace
He added, “Our beloved country has been in the
throes of severe and debilitating social and
economic problems. Virtually all the development
indices have not been favourable: massive and
pervasive poverty, double-digit inflation,
unemployment, dwindling foreign exchange receipts,
poor GDP growth rates, high infant and maternal
mortality, high levels of illiteracy, and millions of
school-age children out of school.”
Atiku said the many problems facing the nation
were already threatening the unity and the existence
of the country. He, therefore, urged Nigerians to
come together to renegotiate the terms of our

The former vice-president said no leader could
make far-reaching positive changes in the country
except the current political structure is changed.

He added, “To be sure, good leaders do make a
difference in the fortunes of countries. However,
leaders operate within structural constraints
imposed by constitutions, laws and regulations and
the local and world economy.

“But the most germane question we need to ask
ourselves is: must we really continue to live
together as one country amidst such a pervasive
climate of disunity, which is impeding our

“My prompt answer to this is yes, we should
remain together because it is the best option, and
because we will be stronger, greater, and better in
one piece than in pieces.”

Attempts to get reactions of President Muhammadu
Buhari’s spokesman, Mr. Femi Adesina, did not
succeed. He had not responded to an email and an
SMS sent to him as of the time of sending this