Honest Conversation Would Have Prevented Civil War, Says Utomi

Ignatius Igwe  
Updated January 13, 2020

A Professor of Political Economy, Pat Utomi, says the Nigerian civil war that claimed about two million lives were completely unnecessary.

Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics, Utomi noted that honest conversation would have avoided the tragic incident.

“In my view, the Nigerian civil war was completely unnecessary. It was something that honest conversation would have taken care of.

“The path of progress that the country was travelling could have continued. Many of the decisions we have taken as a country since then to prevent what went wrong have actually taken us back as a people,” he stated.

READ ALSO: 50 Years After Civil War: Reconciliation Efforts Were Not Pushed Hard, Says Babangida

Speaking further, Utomi decried the presidential system of government the country currently operates on a four-year single term basis.

Professor of Political Economics, Pat Utomi

He explained that the system modelled after the United States does not work to promote the good initially meant due to its expensive nature.

“We have chosen a presidential system as a way of preventing this fracture allegiance. The idea of a presidential system is to select one person who is literally owned by all because he has gone round the whole country canvassing the votes of people.

“What has happened unfortunately is that we have created a bloated expensive political process that really does not work to advance the good that we want.

“The principle of subsidiarity of authority being devolved to levels closer to the people has been lost in this presidential system,” he stated.

His remarks come after former Military President of Nigeria, General Ibrahim Babangida (retired) lamented that all the efforts made to reconcile Nigerians in the aftermath of the civil war have had limited impact because they were not consistently pushed by the authorities.

The former Head of State called on the Federal Government to ensure that the objectives for establishing institutions like the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) and the unity schools were met.