Former lawmaker and social critic, Senator Shehu Sani, has explained why President Bola Ahmed Tinubu cannot relocate Nigeria’s federal capital territory to Lagos.
LEADERSHIP reports that the Presidency had on Wednesday denied plan to relocate Nigeria’s federal capital to Lagos when it accused people it called “mischief-makers” of deliberately twisting the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to relocate its Department of Banking Supervision to Lagos and the directive of the Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development that the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) should relocate its head office back to Lagos.
On Wednesday, President Tinubu’s Special Adviser on Information & Strategy, Bayo Onanuga, denied rumours that the President was planning to relocate the Federal Capital Territory back to Lagos.
However, reacting to the development, Senator Shehu Sani took to his verified X (formerly Twitter) account to explain Abuja’s status as the Federal Capital of Nigeria, reiterating that it cannot be changed overnight.
He wrote: “The status of Abuja can only change if there is a constitutional amendment to that effect and the cumbersome and controversial process of changing or altering the constitution is well known.
“President Tinubu cannot change the capital of Nigeria to Lagos and I believe he will not. But we should remind ourselves that there are many federal establishments that are not headquartered in the FCT, for example, is that NECO HQ is in Minna, NBTE is in Kaduna, NDDC is in PH. Nigerian Railway HQ is still in Ebute meta, Lagos.”
He noted that some headquarters of the federal government agencies were deliberately cited outside Abuja because of the interest of those who were in power in the past and some of the agencies are still outside Abuja because their Abuja head office buildings were yet to be built.
“People have the right to express their opinion including raising issues when they feel suspicious of any move. That is democracy.
“I want to see Senators and Reps you elected stand up on the floor of their chambers and speak intelligently on matters like this to set the record straight and calm the nerves,” Sani wrote.