In contemporary Nigerian political history, it does not take an excessively laborious survey from the ordinary citizens in the streets to find out that the most towering democratic leader who has built national trust among the people is no other person than the former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, fondly called GEJ.
On the radio airwaves, marketplaces, schools and even among the coterie of the confused political class currently in the saddle, everyone tries to fraternise with the former president in order to shore up his or her political credibility. This does not come as a surprise at all to discerning observers; it is because of the high stakes in the fast-approaching 2023 presidential election.
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Interestingly, this is the reason why it is very difficult to discuss power shift to the South without critically examining the South South implications and what the entire nation stands to gain from it. In other words, the Nigerian president from the South South is Nigeria’s best unity insurance come 2023.
After President Muhammadu Buhari completes his second term, he has taken the slot of the North in the North/South power rotation agreement, an age-long issue that defines the proverbial handshake across the Niger.
This is not the issue; the real question is: Who is the aspirant that is most acceptable to the Nigerian voters from the South among the contenders for the highest office of the land?
To most Nigerians, the question is not about the waning or waned influence of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) or the uncertain calculations of the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). It is neither the consideration of ethnicity nor religious identity; Nigeria’s most lethal primordial sentiments. It is about the personality of the contenders and their public accounts of statesmanship. That is why Nigeria’s best game in 2023 is still in the South South.
Ibrahim Isah Hameed