Chieftains of the All Progressives Congress in Ebonyi State have spoken out against the northern governors’ position on the power transfer to the south in 2023.
They stated the north has no basis for not supporting a southerner for president in 2023 in separate interviews in Abakaliki on Sunday.
Okenwa Uka, the APC Youth League’s South-East Coordinator, stated that while the rotating presidency was not written in the constitution, it was a matter of conscience on the ground.
“Even though there is no provision in the constitution for power rotation in the country, what we are talking about is a matter of conscience,” he says. Any zone or region of the country that wants it should have to bargain with the other zones for it.
“There is a sense in the south that the people haven’t been treated fairly, and it’s not like we don’t have people qualified to be president.
“So, even though power is being negotiated, the south should be permitted to take a shot at the presidency at this time,” Uka concluded. The President of Nigeria is the President of Nigeria as a whole, not just of one portion of the country. Our Governors, in my opinion, should continue to negotiate.
“It should not resemble a war situation. Diplomacy and negotiation, in my opinion, should be used to try to realize this ambition for the South.”
Hon Victor Chukwu, Majority Leader of the Ebonyi State House of Assembly, stated that the country’s democracy was in its infancy, adding that the leadership did not need to go to the constitution to address every citizen.
“The northern governors have indicated their southern counterparts’ position is unconstitutional, and that is their opinion on this matter,” he said. However, I believe that a developing democracy like Nigeria should not always rely on the constitution to resolve national concerns.
“You can’t talk about security or togetherness without talking about equity, fairness, and justice. Unspoken or unspoken grudges and rage are what foster uneasiness. When people are slandered and pushed into a corner, insecurity, shootings, and other forms of violence emerge.
“I’m not sure what has shaped the Northern governors’ viewpoint. Yes, democracy is a numbers game. However, common sense should teach them that, regardless of the number of people you have, you must be nationalistic and pragmatic.
“What would they (Northern governors) say is their justification for planning to deny the South (particularly the South-East zone) the presidency in 2023?” Chukwu said. What is their justification for doing so? Is it because they lack qualified personnel, or what?
“Using the principles of fairness, equity, and justice, the North can offer no rationale for refusing to support a Southerner for President in 2023.”