By Fortune Abang
Nigerians in Diaspora Organisation Worldwide (NIDOWW) says Nigeria can achieve more meaningful national growth through constitutional amendment in the country.
The Chairman of NIDO-Americas, Mr Obed Monago made this known in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.
Monago, who spoke on the backdrop of collective view points by NIDOWW marking Nigeria Democracy Day across various continents, said that Nigeria needed to restore its lost glory.
“I remember when Nigeria was member of non-allied nations Brazil, South Korea, among others but where are we now? we can achieve what we want to achieve through constitutional amendment.
“The 1999 Constitution can be amended; we can go to unlimited number of amendments to get what we deserve and at the end, discard what do not apply.
“It is the will to practice democracy that is important, it is not what is written on the pages of paper, but the will to change that is imperative.
“Constitutional amendment as it pertains diaspora, we support it, Section 77, subsection 2 should be amended to allow diasporas organise themselves into political apparatus or organisation and vote for themselves.
“When we vote for ourselves and have representatives, it makes diaspora voting rights more credible, but voting same political elites from here to rule us in National Assembly will make less impact,” he said.
He also said that Section 315, subsection 5(a) on the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) should also be amended or omitted from the Constitution, to stand alone as an Act.
According to him, constitutional amendment is carried out in countries like the U.S. where Nigeria borrowed its leaf from, saying Nigeria’s political landscape will improve if that is done.
“We adopted three tiers of government, but it is very weak, if we can strengthen them to become independent of one another, it will give them autonomy to have checks and balances.
“It will also promote respect for the Rule of Law and help to overhaul adherence to rules and regulations that will guide against offenses,” he said.
He explained that it had become necessary for Nigerians in the Diaspora to organise themselves and vote their representatives during election, to represent their interests at the green chamber.
He noted that doing so would also boost Nigeria’s economic growth and Foreign Direct Investments.
“The concept of Diasporas staying abroad and there is no structure in place to vote and be voted for, will be subsumed and basically have no impact.
“I do not support that, but if that is what we get, then let us get it and build on it to be in a right position to vote as Nigerians in the Diaspora,” Monago said.
NIDOWW comprised Nigerians in Diaspora organisations chapter in Europe, Americas, Asia, Oceania and Africa, which harnessed and galvanised professional and financial resources of Nigerian citizens across continents to promote their fatherland.