The North-South Alliance, a socio-political group, has rejected zoning of the 2023 presidency.
In a statement, on Wednesday, Ukachukwu Anwuzie, national coordinator of the group in the south, said the experiences of ex-Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo, Umaru Musa Yar’adua, Goodluck Jonathan and President Muhammadu Buhari are evidence that rotational presidency is not the quick fix to the nation’s leadership crisis.
Anwuzie said while the group advocates competency over zoning, it also supports inclusiveness in government
“Our group, believing in one Nigeria, governed by Unity, Peace and Justice, having discovered that all the agitations, distortions and disturbances we are experiencing are induced by leadership insincerity, insensitivity, incompetence and selfishness, have come to terms with the fact that our problem is not necessarily rotation between North and South and neither is it relationship between South and North.”
“What that means is that we do not necessarily need any zoning to get Nigeria on track. Zoning as a matter of fact, thus far, has not shown any real advantage, except perhaps for the notion of giving every region the feeling of belongingness, but really what did the Southwest gain in eight years of Obasanjo as President, what about the South -South during President Goodluck and now you can tell what is happening to the Northwest as their own presides.
“If as a nation, we truly need a break from the past and we genuinely want our nation to progress, away from maladministration, poverty, hunger, unemployment, banditry and all forms of violent agitations, it is high time we shifted ground from seeking tribal leadership that has failed us all and move towards electing competence; tribe, language or religion notwithstanding,” the statement read.
He said the group has also endorsed Samuel Ohuabunwa, a former former chairman of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG), for president in 2023.
He said the decision was taken after a painstaking research for someone capable of leading the country.
Anwunzie described Ohuabunwa as a “detribalised Nigerian and a worthy candidate fit to take Nigeria out of troubled waters.”
He also enjoined the former NESG chairman to join one of the major political parties in the country to make his presidential dream a reality.
“Incidentally, he is from the Southeast, a region that has not really been tested and given the chance to have her best at the driver’s seat of our national destiny. The last individual from that zone who led Nigeria, did so for only 6 months over 50 years ago.”
Ohuabunwa had, in January 2021, announced his intention to run for the position of president.
The entrepreneur and politician was former president of Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) as well as chairman of Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN).