A Fourth Republic senator, Sen. Roland Owie, has urged the people of the South East geopolitical zone not to expect to produce Nigeria’s president until 2027.
Owie, a chieftain of the African Democratic Party (ADP), described as infeasible the clamour for Igbo presidency in 2023.
He made this known in an interview with Vanguard published on Sunday.
He said, “There is a Benin parable that says a widow’s child does not know his or her mother’s boyfriend. I can tell you authoritatively as the National Chairman of ADP National Contact Committee, one quarter of the good people in PDP are already in ADP, half of the good people in APC are already with us at night; you will see what is going to happen. APC will look back, PDP will look back while preparing for election and they will find nobody. People are just gambling with them, they are teaching lessons. We are going to bring out credible candidates; our presidential candidate will come from the North.
“I have said it before; you cannot have peace when there is no justice. In 1999 after the constitutional conference when the late Alex Ekweme created the six zonal arrangement for Nigeria, it was agreed that the presidency should rotate from the North to the South every eight years. The South took the first shot through Obasanjo. The North took the second shot that went to the late President Yar’Adua, unfortunately God called Yar’Adua. If we had adopted the Abacha constitution which provided for two Vice Presidents, we would not have had the problem we are having. Abacha said where a President comes from, there will be one Vice President.
“For instance if the President is from the North and the Vice President is from the South, there will be another Vice President from the North, that was Abacha’s constitution. If that had been adopted, as soon as Yar’Adua died, his Vice from the North would have taken over; so we would not have had the problem we are having today. But since we did not adopt that pattern, it has been eight years in the South, two years plus in the North through Yar’Adua, it came back to the South again for President Goodluck Jonathan’s six and a half years. By the 29th of May 2019, the South would have taken 14 years and some days while the North would have taken five years and about 200 days.
“After that date, the North has eight years to complete their tenure; it is clear that when there is no justice, there cannot be peace. So when I read people say ‘South-East vote for us so that by 2023 an Igbo man will be President’, I disagree, it is not time, it is 2027 that presidency will go to the South-East. In our party, we are saying Vice Presidency will go to the South-East in 2019; by the grace of God, in 2027, presidency will still go to the South-East, anything outside this is not good for the nation because you cannot select justice, it has to be thorough, it has to be natural, it has to reflect the goodwill of the people.”