Prof. Itse Sagay: says Nigeria should reinstate the 1963 constitution
By Abiodun OBA
The Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), chairman, Professor Itse Sagay has advised that the 1963 constitution should be adopted.
According to him, the 1963 constitution addresses the current agitations in many parts of the country.
Sagay who spoke in an interview on Channels Television said, “My own personal preference is that we should scrap this constitution (referring to the 1999 constitution) and adopt the 1963 constitution that can contain everything that is being agitated for now.
“We adopt it, with amendments here and there, to make it accommodate states rather than regions, which we used to have.
“I think all these agitations will die down and everybody will be happy.”
Looking back, Sagay recounted the beauty of the regional government, “When I was in secondary school, I knew nothing about the federal government, I only knew about Ibadan and Awolowo. The region controlled my life from A to Z.
“I knew nothing about the federal government. Everything worked perfectly, beautifully and happily. So, that is what we are missing.
“The regions competed. Nigeria developed fast. The regions kept what they produced, sent 20 per cent to the federal level, and then 30 percent to a distributable level, which was then distributed to the regions, according to their needs.
“And everybody was happy. We just have to go back to that. Otherwise, Nigerians will not enjoy stability.”
In the 1963 republican constitution, Nigeria operated true federalism hinged on four regions — east, north, west, and mid-west, with independent structures that reflected its peculiarities