Alhaji Ango Abdullahi, Chairman of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF) has addresed speculations arising on the willingness of the North to relinquish power come 2023.
In an interview with the Daily Sun, Abdullahi said Power resides with the North and this was a huge factor for the Presidential Election victory of Olusegun Obasanjo in 1999.
According to Ango, he was one of the people who designed the manifesto and Constitution that governs the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) and it was agreed upon, that power should rotate between the North and South. This was the reason why Power came back to the North after Obasanjo’s 8-year-rule, with the election of Yar’adua as President.
Unfortunately, death cut short Yar’adua’s tenure which Jonathan completed.
Ango said PDP ought to have relinquished power back to the North after Jonathan completed Yar’adua’s tenure. Instead, the party backed him up to contest in the 2011 Presidential Election. This action marked the “beginning of the breakdown of the power shift”.
The North felt shortchanged that Obasanjo from the South completed his 8years tenure while they had only 3years to rule with the untimely death of Yaradua.
The NEF Chairman, Abdullahi Ango stated that Goodluck Jonathan worsened the already fragile situation by “challenging that there were no documents to show the agreement of power shift or zoning”
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The issue of Power Zoning although agreed upon by the members of the PDP, is not entrenched in the Nigerian constitution. This translates that President could emerge from any part of the country, for as long as it takes, provided he is lawfully elected by the people.
“I think there is nothing wrong at all if the North keeps power for century because democracy is all about numbers and we(North) have it”