Amid growing disenchantment and calls for a southerner to take over power in 2023, a northern group, the Arewa Mandate Initiative, has reiterated its position that the region has enough qualified names.
Point man of the group, Mohammed Mubarak, told Everyday.ng that the position of his group contained in its statement last week remained the same.
The group said last week: “As the preparations for the conduct of the All Progressives Congress, APC, congresses and National Convention are in top gear, we are constrained to again revisit the issue of power rotation between the North and South of Nigeria, in order to dispel the notion in some quarters that the North is scheming to retain power in the centre beyond 2023
“We advise those who may be nursing this feeling to better look for something else to
do, as the question of power shift to the south is a settled matter
“We, in the Arewa Mandate Initiative, AMI, can authoritatively state that, majority of
the interest groups in the North have embraced the rotational presidency between the North and South, and are committed to its full Implementation in 2023.
“Our consultations across numerous political groups, especially on the All Progressives Congress, APC, platforms across the north within the last three months, have shown evidence of the commitment to ensuring that the next president of Nigeria, emerged from the southern part of the country
“The prevailing mood among the APC northern family is that for Nigeria to survive and prosper in peace and harmony, the principle of power rotation must be respected and adhered to by all stakeholders in the Nigerian project.
“While the North looks forward to the South to put forward the best and most acceptable material for the office of the President, the Arewa Mandate Initiative, had conducted a survey of the likely personality that could be said to possess the credentials needed to occupy the exhaulted office of the country
“Among those that the North might be looking out for, include, the current minister of state, petroleum, chief Timipriye Sylvia, from Bayelsa state; the current minister of Transport, Chief Rotimi Amechi, from Rivers; and Senator Victor Ndoma Egba, a former Senate Leader and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, from Cross River state, all from the South-South.
“For the South-East, names like, the former Governor of Imo State, Chief Rochas
Okorocha; the current Minister of Science and technology, Dr.Chris Ogbomnaya Onu;
current Governor of Ebonyi, David Umahi; and the former Senate President, Dr, Ken
Nnamani, are listed as front runners for the plum job
“In the South-West, the Arewa may be looking at names like, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed
Tinubu, the National Leader of APC, current Governor of Ekiti, John Kayode Fayemi,
current Minister of Works, Mr. Raji Fashola and current Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, as likely materials with the requisite qualification for the office of the
“Though, the North might not want to interfere with the process of selecting the best out of the gentlemen that have been listed on its survey, there is a very strong
indication that there could be a dark horse among them who may be most preferred
across the board, on account of his impeccable records both public and private service, his interconnectivity with various ethnic and religious groups, which are major considerations by the Villa.
“While the Arewa mandate Initiative, already has a clue on who might be that personality among the names already mentioned, and gets the North’s endorsement, sources at the presidency have hinted at the strategy of settling for a former president from the south, as a compromise, in the event that things get to a head.
“But, we are also aware, and assured that everything is being done by the leaders of
the party, towards ensuring a seamless nomination process that will be credible and accepted by majority of the party members and Nigerians in general.”