Four socio-cultural groups in Nigeria namely, the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Afenifere, Ohaneze Ndigbo and the Middle Belt Forum, have consolidated on their geo-political coalition christened ‘Mass Alliance for Inclusive Nigeria (MAIN) Front’ to deepen the clamour for the restructuring of the country.
The leaderships of the four organisations announced the development at a world press conference they held at the Chief Harold Dappa-Biriye Conference Centre, Government House, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, on Saturday.
The press conference, which was moderated by Yinka Odumakin, Spokesman of Afenifere, preceded a mega rally on restructuring organised by the MAIN Front in Yenagoa and hosted by the Bayelsa State Government.
The campaign on restructuring took place at the newly-inaugurated Yenagoa Pavilion in the Oxbow Lake area of the state capital.
Under the MAIN Front, PANDEF represents the South-South geo-political zone while Afenifere, Ohaneze Ndigbo and the Middle Belt Forum represent the South-West, South-East and North Central geo-political zones, respectively.
It was gathered that the four geo-political zones formed the MAIN Front during the 2014 National Conference as a platform to push for common interest in the national political equation.
Present at the media event were Edwin Clark, Ayo Adebanjo, Nnia John Nwodo, Bala Takaya, Amos Utuama, Viola Onwuliri, Olu Falae, Walter Ofonagoro and Idongesit Nkanga.
Also present were Alabo Graham Douglas, Alfred Diete-Spiff, Albert Horsefall, Olusegun Mimiko, Femi Okunrounmu, Chris Ekpeyong, Banji Akintoye, Bassey Henshaw, Jonah Jang, Samson Agbaru and Godini Darah, among others.
Bala Takaya, Chairman, Middle Belt Forum, read the position paper of the geo-political coalition titled, “Nigeria At A Crossroads: MAIN Front To The Rescue” to journalists.
He said that Nigeria was currently in a state of stagnation and her people stranded with no hope of economic and political emancipation.
Takaya stressed that the future of the country’s younger generation is not secure while the anxiety of women increases daily over the safety of their children.
He said that under the present social order where lives have become cheap and not guaranteed with almost assured deaths of children and women, the quest for peace and socio-political progress will remain an unfulfilled passion.
According to him, the major assignment of the alliance “is to salvage the ship of the Nigerian State tottering in a scarily rudderless manner in the roaring waters of insecurity, economic decline and permanent political tension, and the restoration of the stolen Nigeria ‘Article of Faith’ amongst Nigerians.”
He said the MAIN Front has pledged to “effect the restricting of the Nigerian State to a federal system of government where each and federating unit shall hold equal and coordinate powers with the central authority, and where no state is subjected to an inferior position in the country”.
“The point being made, in no unmistaken terms, is that the dismantled federal architecture must be restructured, where each state in Nigeria will be self-accounting wit respect to its nature-endowed natural resources, of which no federating unit in Nigeria is denied of God’s numerous gifts to His creatures, and self-securing of lives and properties and property within its constitutionally-defined ego-political space”.
Takaya called on Nigerians desirous of equity, fairness and justice in the affairs of the country join forces with the MAIN Front to save the nation from sinking.
The alliance charged the youths and the womenfolk to assume ownership of the task of pulling Nigeria away from the precipice and restoring its lost values.
There were, however, indications that the MAIN Front would take its activities to the South-East, South-West and the Middle Belt in the months ahead.