As the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ratified the zoning of the Office of its National Chairman to the northern part of the country, one of the contenders for the presidential ticket of the party from the North, former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, says the next president could come from any region as politicking heightens 2023 presidential election.
National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, announced that the NEC adopted the report of the Ifeanyi Ugwanyi’s Committee on the Zoning of offices of the National Working Committee adding that the issue of the Governor Bala Mohammed Committee came up and it was resolved that it should be deferred till another NEC meeting. Mohammed’s Committee dealt with where the party should get its presidential candidate should be from.
“Today’s meeting was to consider the Ugwuanyi committee report and that was what he did”, Ologbondiyan added.
Governor Ifeanyi Committee had recommended to NEC that the national chairman of the main opposition party should come from the North, raising permutations the party would pick its presidential candidate from the South.
In his remarks at the NEC meeting, Atiku said, “The PDP has the right to determine its rules on how the party should be governed,” he said.
“The people of Nigeria also have the right to determine who governs them.
“Where the president comes from has never been the problem of Nigeria, and I can cite examples; neither will it be the solution. There is no such thing as a president from Southern Nigeria or a president from Northern Nigeria.
“There is only one president from Nigeria, for Nigeria, by Nigerians.”
He asked NEC to be fair and just in deciding where the party’s presidential candidate would come from.
Atiku, the presidential candidate of the PDO in 2019, said it was the right of the PDP to determine who represented it or not, just as citizens reserved the right to decide who to vote for.
According to him, there was nothing like a southern or northern president as what was important was that such an individual must be a Nigerian.
The former vice-president stressed that the decision of the NEC would largely determine whether or not the PDP would have a chance in 2023 to return to power or not.
“Since the inception, this party has faced serious challenges and has risen above sentiments to solve those challenges and move forward,” he added.