CLAIM: A viral WhatsApp post entitled “Below is the purported kite being flown by the Federal Government – Nigerian Economic Restructuring Bill 2021” outlines that Nigeria will be made up of 42 states with seven per each of her constituent geo-political zone.
VERDICT: Checks and confirmation by Dubawa showed there is no such ‘bill’ from the Federal Government as widely circulated. It was only a ‘proposal’ from an author, Ayo Akinfe in one of his columns.
A viral WhatsApp post which has been forwarded/shared many times as indicated by the instant messaging application, entitled “Below is the purported kite being flown by the Federal Government – Nigerian Economic Restructuring Bill 2021”, claims that Nigeria will be made up of 42 states with seven per each of her constituent geo-political zone.
The post which bears the author as ‘Ayo Akinfe’ on his website, said:  Nigeria will be made up of 42 states, with seven per each of her constituent geo-political zone. These shall be:
 Bayelsa State – Yenagoa
 Western Ijaw State – Patani
 Rivers State – Port Harcourt
 Cross River State – Calabar
 Akwa Ibom State – Uyo
 Edo State – Benin
 Delta State – Warri
 Mambilla State – Gashaka
 Taraba State – Jalingo
 Adamawa State – Yola
 Borno State – Maiduguri
 Yobe State – Damaturu
 Bauchi State – Bauchi
 Gombe State – Gombe
 Anioma State – Asaba
 Orashi State – Omoku
 Anambra State – Awka
 Imo State – Owerri
 Enugu State – Enugu
 Abia State – Umuahia
 Ebonyi State – Abakaliki
 Abuja State – Abuja
 Gurara State – Kafanchan
 Benue State – Makurdi
 Plateau State – Jos
 Nasarawa State – Lafia
 Kogi State – Lokoja
 Niger State – Minna
 Kwara State – Ilorin
 Oyo State – Ibadan
 Ogun State – Abeokuta
 Lagos State – Ikeja
 Ondo – Akure
 Ekiti – Ado-Ekiti
 Osun – Oshogbo
 Sokoto State – Sokoto
 Kebbi State – Birnin Kebbi
 Kaduna State – Kaduna
 Katsina State – Katsina
 Kano State – Kano
 Jigawa State – Dutse
 Zamfara State – Gusua
The post which has also been shared on other social media platforms, like Facebook and Twitter, has generated mixed reactions. Many have debated and deliberated over the post but yet there is nothing as such.
According to afrobarometer.org, Nigeria is a federation of 36 states and 1 Federal Capital Territory. Each of the 36 states is a semi-autonomous political unit that shares powers with the Federal Government as enumerated under the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
From 1960 to 1966, Nigeria operated on the basis of Northern region, Western region, Eastern region, and the Mid-Western region.
The creation of states began in 1967 with General Yakubu Gowon coming to power via a coup d’état. He dissolved the regions and created twelve states out of them.
In verifying the authenticity of the post, our correspondent searched through the internet to find a traceable background link to the post, but no credible media outlet has reported any news about the purported bill.
A twitter account owned by Ayo Akinfe (@AyoAkinfe), where the story was shared after it was posted on its website, created more clarification about the post.
While responding to enquiries from our correspondent via his Twitter Direct message, on the purported bill which bears his name, he said, it was “Just a proposal from me.”
“I intend to publish a collection of all my thoughts in a book,” he added.
Akinfe who authored the piece said he writes 10-point columns every day on his website.
However, the London-based journalist said “Ignore all those wayo people attributing it to the government.”
Dubawa also reached out to the Senior Special Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu. In Garba’s reaction, he described the report as ‘unknown’ and asked that the presidency be left out of it since it was not a draft bill from the presidency.
The trending piece which has been attributed to the federal government is FALSE.
The author, Ayo Akinfe, clarified to Dubawa that he wrote the piece as a proposal in his column; hence, the ‘Nigerian Economic Restructuring Bill 2021’ is not a purported kite being flown by the Federal Government as widely circulated on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.
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