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NPRC was designed to fail – Soyinka

Posted by Musikilu Mojeed on 2005/07/12 | Views: 762 |

NPRC was designed to fail – Soyinka


Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, on Tuesday said that the Federal Government deliberately packaged the National Political Reform Conference to fail.

Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka, on Tuesday said that the Federal Government deliberately packaged the National Political Reform Conference to fail.

Soyinka spoke in Abuja shortly after the 8th Wole Soyinka Lecture, organised by the National Association of Seadogs.

He said that the conference, which ended in a stalemate on Monday with the boycott of the plenary session by the South-South, was designed by the Federal Government as a consultation meeting of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.

He said that the failure of the conference to resolve the face-off between the North and the South-South over what the Niger Delta people described as the marginal increase of the derivation fund from 13 per cent to 17 per cent had vindicated the position of the Pro-National Conference Organisations on the NPRC.

Soyinka, a bigwig of the PRONACO, said though he was yet to study the outcome of the conference, it could not have succeeded with most of the delegates chosen by President Olusegun Obasanjo and the governors of the 36 states, most of who were elected on the platform of the PDP.

Added Soyinka, “I have not studied their decision.

“But from what I read, the conference has gone the way we predicted it might go.

“I also got to study why the South-South delegates pulled out in the first place.

“I understand it was over revenue allocation or resource control.

“Again, that is a very contentious issue and I believe that if the meeting had been more representative rather than being a PDP consultation meeting, the result would have been more positive.”

The Nobel Laureate, however, said the outcome of the conference would be used as one of the working documents in the conference being planned by the PRONACO, adding, “Whatever they came out with is not totally negative.

“A lot of the work has been done for us.

“In other words, we need to look at what they have done, picking out what is missing or what is wrong or unsatisfactory.”

Speaking earlier during the lecture on the theme, “Cults, Shrines and Impunity,” Soyinka said Nigerians should stop blaming him or the pyrate confraternity he founded for the serious cult menace in the country’s tertiary institutions.

Insisting that there was a huge difference between cults and confraternities, he said, “To refer to Pyrate as a cult is a denigration of what it stands for which members will not accept and what I will not accept on their behalf.

“Pyrates have no doubt about what they are.

“If you live in the past, you rob yourself of the opportunity for remedial action.

“If you say we should go back to the beginning, we should also find out the difference between the beginning and now.

“If you don’t do that, it will be cheap scapegoatism to continue to blame pyrates for cults in the universities.

“There are those who say they are no longer pyrates.

“Me, I was born a pyrate, I will die a pyrate.

“The pyrate confraternity has nothing to apologise for, nothing to be ashamed of in their conduct.

“Yes there are members who misbehaved from time to time but they are punished either within the fraternity or if it is a criminal act, they are handed over to the police unlike some of our highly placed individuals in this nation who when their own people, colleagues and children commit the most heinous crime, they immediately put them on the plane to go abroad where they continue with their lives of criminality.

“Pyrates do not pretend to be angels.

“As you heard, some of them are hard drinkers.

“But the excesses people commit against themselves are their business for as long as they do not commit it against other people.

“If a criminal act is committed, the society must punish them.

“That is what the law is there for.

“It is this failure of this instrumentation of the law, which has created this degeneration, this monstrosity that abuses the name of the pyrate confraternity.”

He blamed the laxity of those in position of authority for the cult problem, saying that it was a national problem rather than that of universities.

He advised the Federal Government to tackle the problem, by committing part of the savings from the debt relief granted the country to carry out a study on the issue.

The Punch, Wednesday July 13, 2005

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Okfold(Sobe, Edo, Nigeria)says...

I want the meaning of female owan name Ekeke (Edo state)

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Toluwalase Samuel Olufemi(Ijebu, Ogun, Nigeria)says...

Authority belongs to God, once He decrees it is final and binding

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Ikponmwosa Osamede(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Your meaning of Osamede is wrong. Osamede means God has given me a crown