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There has been so much talk about restructuring, but no one really has put an all-inclusive definition on the conundrum. There is always the need for positive soft restructuring and adjustment of any democracy, which pragmatically means rearranging the democratic blocks, structures, institutions and systems of the nation into more productive/gainful arrangements. A federal system where the center is too strong or heavy will always present shocks to the local areas that cannot be easily overcome. Four different longitudinal researches have shown that the culprit frustrating Nigerians have not been PDP, nor APC but the failed democracy structures, institutions and systems that were supposed to service the people. Their arrangements have consistently failed to deliver the flow of resources down to the masses. Including failures of the institution of the civil service, which must be reimagined and its bureaucracy straightened.

Many developing nations like Nigeria continue to argue the nation be restructured along hard linesto achieve cooperative federalism, making federating states like nation states, where devolvedcontrolallows equal power sharing with the center. However, if they cannot make a federal republic work, whatever hard restructuring is done, the things that kept the federal republic structure from working will keep the restructured nation also from working. Namely – fragmentary democracy systems, institutionalized corruption, greed, self-interest, lust for power, sectionalism, nepotism, ethnicity and regionalism. India operates a cooperative federalism, how has that taken the Indian state forward? It still suffers from the worst brokenness, fragmentisms, marginalization, discrimination, deep dirty corruption, state anemia, regionalism, sectionalism, ethnicity, fund thievery and syphoning, and caste system abuses.

Brazil is a federalism, it has still not ended the institutionalized endemicity of gross corruption, thievery, marginalization, discrimination, deep dirty corruption, state anemia, fund thievery and syphoning, and racism. The elites who stole up all the wealth of their nations who are crying for cooperative federalism with devolution of power to federated states are just being wicked and deceptive. They should first return the stolen wealth and their accrued interests and allow the fair use of those resources to develop the nation as a federal republic, and see if anyone will care about federalism/republic. The structures, institutions and systems of government have been overwhelmed and incapacitated, so can’t deliver the expected pubic good because of the massive stealing. Infrastructure failed massively because the foundation of the nation’s wealth was removed from underneath. If the political class do not do what will satisfy people but continue to abuse their leadership opportunities, a people’s revolution will be forced. This revolution will not just be like the mere Arab Spring but the people will be forced to think up more dangerous ideas to free themselves from oppressions, and effect their desired transformative-changes.

When others speak of restructuring, they refer to how resources are shared, adjusting the sharing formula so that local areas that produce any given natural resource, control itsextraction/mining and the accruable income, while paying appropriate taxes or a given percentage to the federal government. Others still indicate that restructuring is reducing/balancing federal power to states and local government councils. Restructuring is a meal ticket to winning the 2019 election. However, I prognosticate that Nigeria will remain same even if the hardest restructuring are implemented – institutional corruption will continue, the structures, institutions and systems of the nation will continue to be broken and failing, the needs, wishes and aspirations of the people will continue to be neglected, and multi-level, multi-dimensional grievances and conflicts will continue to intensify-escalate.

Four different longitudinal researches conducted between 2006 and 2018, have proved that the major problem with Nigeria is the failure and brokenness of the democracy structures, institutions and systems that service the people that continue to frustrate the nation. They always twist, corrupt, frustrate and neutralize every honest, good thinking and creative administration that come to power. It is therefore the creation of efficient institutions and systems that will deliver the public goods and enable the effective distribution of the common wealth. If the systems and structures violating the people are not set right, put a straight man in office, the crooked systems and structures will make him double crooked& eat him up. However, if the systems and structures are straightened out, even if a crooked man is put in office, the system and structures being straight will either break him, or force him to change for good. This material suggests ways of creating progress by restructuring and reimagining the institutions and systems that have caused Nigeria to continue in perpetual brokenness and failure.

If instead of looking at the democracy structures, institutions and systems that service the people, cooperative federalism is chosen, that would enable strong warlords to capture and keep their sections of the nation under tight grip without the restraining influences from the other sections of the nation presently possible in a federal republic. Such counter-balancing forces from other sections of the nation have the clout to stand up against such powerful sectional elites. The issues of non-performance and the failure of government institutions and systems to deliver is not the weakness of the states nor the over-lording/overloading of a federal government system but the massive unforgivable stealing that shamelessly continues to syphon the wealth of the nations from the commonwealth because of the loopholes the failing democracy structures, institutions and operational systems software allow their operators. If the developing nations can fix these problems they will be on their way to the Promised Land.

Structures and systems that stress society aggravate conflicts and complex violence, they must therefore be radically transformed. Sometimes the structures and systems are made devious by their operators and not that they themselves were necessarily conceptualized or constructed wrongly. However, in many cases they were actually conceptualized or constructed wrongly. Many of these contraptions that fail to deliver were conceptualized on the basis of their initiators/benefactors sectional interests, meaning making, and vision, and not the aspirations/needs of the people. Neither were they based on research and next-generation public-policy planning and development processes. Actual progress only happens when these basic realities, and people’s interest are taken into account while conceptualizing or constructing structures and systems that are expected to be efficient. The role of socio-economic, and political institutions in a nation’s economic performance are shaped by long-lasting, deep-seated political and social challenges confronting each nation, so that economic, social and political institutions not performing in one nation can be seen performing in another.

What reasons can be advanced for that inconsistency and divergent outcome? It is generally agreed that economic, social and political institutions and systems have due impact on a nation’s socio-economic performance. Economic institutions like property rights, regulatory institutions, institutions for macroeconomic stabilization, institutions for social insurance, institutions for conflict management, and so on, are the major growth-performance driving engines. Such institutions influence wealth creation-distribution, investments within the physical, and human capital, including technology, and the nation’s industrial production.

The needs of developing nations are not creating new, breakaway, independent smaller states through self-determination, new governments by electoral tsunamis, new coalition parties, more politicians, and new projects but a restructuring of the structures and systems of governance that will no more disenfranchise, be elusive or enslave the people. If the structures and systems delivering failed services to the people are wired right, even a child could rule and produce social justice and succeed in improving people’s lives.

One may term militant groups like MEND, and Boko Haram, as rebellious groups, and yes, they are really so, but rebellion is normally a high-pitched indication of a blowback problem, or a sign that something is wrong with the structures-systems of delivery of the nation’s public goods. The institutions/systems are broken and require reform, restructuring, defragmentation or reformatting like a broken computer hard drive, and transformation, like the heart of a man from inaccuracy to accuracy in rhythm.

I encourage a restructuring the soft structures/institutions, not the restructuring of the hard structures like the physical regions, prefectures or states that usually lead to state balkanization. And also restructure the way their associated systems function to impact on the forward march, advancement and progress of the nation and its people toward the Promised Land. A leadership that would move the structures and systems of the nation forward must hold open debates on strategies to transform the problems of Fragmentary Democracy Systems: Blowback Conflicts.

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