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Federal Character: A Curse To Nigeria - Politics - Nairaland

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What Is Federal Character- A Curse Or Blessing? / Federal Character Breeds Mediocrity - Sanusi / What Is Federal Character? (1) (2) (3) (4)

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Federal Character: A Curse To Nigeria by Justcash(m): 6:53pm On Jun 17, 2010
Nigeria is in the position that she is today because of the stringent adherence to federal character principle.

According to Ladipo Adamolekun, John Erero and Basil Oshionebo in the Journal of Federalism 1991 21(4):75-88;

[b]The "federal character" principle, which has been enshrined in Nigeria's Constitution since 1979, seeks to ensure that appointments to public service institutions fairly reflect the linguistic, ethnic, religious, and geographic diversity of the country

The definition clearly stated that "Federal character" is a tool for ensuring fairness in public service over professionalism and goal attainment.

Is Federal character the solution to the problems that we are facing in this country?

My thought:
I believe that Professionalism and goal attainment ability should be considered above federal character.

In Nigeria, Federal character has become more of a curse than a blessing. The total systemic collapse in Nigeria's socio-economic and political environment can be attributed to the Federal character practise.
Our political system is in shambles because professionals and experienced individuals are over-looked due to the fact that they are more in one part of the country than the order. The imbalance in the literacy rate between the South and the north of Nigeria has made it impossible to have qualified people in sensitive government positions. For example, the North would rather let an Arabic "Alamijiri" teacher from the north to be the minister of education, than to allow a southerner to play the role, all because of the a perceived need for a proper representation.
Parties now adopt the principle as a means of gaining credibility. PDP had to resort to a zoning arrangement for their political positions in order to reflect a federal character, and win credibility among the ethnic groups in Nigeria. We all know the result. Thay have produced inefficient and ineffective leaders, who would never have been able to compete with other potential pro-developmental leaders in the country.

Umar Musa Yar'adua is an example. We all know his story. It simply shows that "Federal character" does not bring about development.

The worst thing is that Nigeria practices this "Federal character" in every sphere of the country, including sports. This is sad because the more we do that, the more we ignore the more qualified and effective Nigerians, for less efficient and non-result oriented people. Look at our National soccer team, it is the federal character idea that has kept us where we are now.


If We must stay as one nation, then we must exist without a consideration of the dividing factors of our Nation. If we are Nigerians, then We should be Nigerians. Religion, sex, tribe, language etc must not matter atall.
We need to harness the abundant potentials in this country by not pretending to be one. We must know and believe that we are one.
There is an urgent need to use more of professionals and result oriented Nigerians to carry out national tasks, than to use unprogressive people due to this "Federal character " issue.
If Tunde Fashola is the best leader in the country, he should be able to run for the presidential post in this country without having to say, "it is not yet the turn of the Yorubas."
Recruitment in our armed forces should be done based purely on capabilities and prospects than by ethnic consideration and malicious aims.
Our National sports teams should have people that are ready to deliver irrespective of where they come from in the country. After all we are all Nigerians and want to move forward.

I can go on and on.


If we simply cannot stay in Nigeria as Nigerians, and do things based of capabilities and qualification, then we need to divide into ethnic lines, no matter how many.
We are Nigerians. Every Nigerian that is capable needs to be given a chance without his tribe being of importance.

Final statement:

Please, let us fight against Federal character in Nigeria. It is killing us!

Re: Federal Character: A Curse To Nigeria by Gentiejag(f): 2:36pm On Jul 04, 2012
I do not know when u wrote this thing bur i want to u to know that i truly appreciate it as it has helped me in my examinations...nice thoughts...thank u so much
Re: Federal Character: A Curse To Nigeria by ENIMONEY(f): 5:41pm On Jan 09, 2014
This has helped me in my assignment....keep it up and I totally agree with you,the problems in Nigeria is just too much,where do we start from?

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