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2023: North Central leaders demand presidency, reject secession

Leaders of the North Central geopolitical zone under the umbrella of the North Central Peoples’ Forum (NCPF) on Tuesday demanded that major political parties in…

Leaders of the North Central geopolitical zone under the umbrella of the North Central Peoples’ Forum (NCPF) on Tuesday demanded that major political parties in the country should zone their 2023 presidential tickets to the region.

The position of the region, comprising Kwara, Niger, Plateau, Kogi, Benue and Nasarawa states, is coming at a time some leaders of the South West and South East geopolitical zones are scheming to produce the president of the country come 2023.

Addressing newsmen in Abuja, on behalf of the leaders, the Director-General of NCPF, Sule Dikeson, said in the spirit of fairness, the other five geopolitical zones should support the North Central to produce the successor of President Muhammadu Buhari come 2023.

To actualise the demand, he said the forum would reach out to stakeholders in the five other geopolitical zones.

“Our zone should also produce the next president of this country. If we are given the opportunity to rule, the North Central will unite this country,” he said, adding that the region has not produced president or vice president (elected).

“If given the opportunity, he said, the agitation and cracks in the polity would be reduced, saying there is no tribe that can claim the ownership of the region.

“Aside from other tribes, we have Yoruba, Hausa and Igbos in the North Central,” he said.

On the planned security summit, the director general said prominent leaders from the region, including former heads of state, governors and National Assembly leaders, will proffer solutions to the insecurity challenges bedevilling the region and the country at large.

“Former governors and leaders from the region will be in attendance. Former military generals and prominent persons will come. These former leaders are working on this summit and they will find solutions to the problems of Nigeria.

“The conference will not be a talk shop. We are concerned about the security and welfare of our people. We are reaching out to the people that matter ahead of 2023. The geopolitical zone will work together and ensure that whoever is qualified is given the opportunity,” he said.

Faulting the calls for secession, the forum said Nigeria must remain united for the benefit of all.

“This country must remain united. If there’s a crisis, we that are the middle will suffer more. We must promote peace within our zone. You cannot go to the South without passing through the North Central and you cannot go to the North, without passing through the North Central,” he said.

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