* Warn Southern politicians against the mortgage of the future
Deji Elumoye and Udora Orizu in Abuja
As the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), is holding its primary elections to select its presidential flag bearer this weekend in Abuja, the South and Mid-Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF ) urged delegates to vote for only credible southern aspirants, warning that Nigeria’s unity and peace could be jeopardized if delegates allowed unjustifiable determinations to be exhibited.
The leaders, in a statement signed by Chief Edwin Kiagbodo Clark; Chief Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo; the general president of the Middle Belt Forum, Dr. Pogu Bitrus; and the General Chairman of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Ambassador George Obiozor, further warned that it would be totally unacceptable for the main political parties in the country to choose candidates from the north as standard bearers for the 2023 presidency.
This, they said, is due to the fact that the northern part of the country would have fully enjoyed the presidency of the country for the entire eight-year statutory period by 2023, under President Muhammadu Buhari, and therefore assert that the next president of Nigeria should come from the South, especially the South East.
The SMBLF has sternly warned all people in Southern Nigeria including politicians, civil servants, professionals and academics not to accept the post of Vice President under any circumstances, adding that it will not be not just a dishonorable legacy for them and the generations after them. but amounts to slavishly mortgaging the political future of the people of southern Nigeria.
The leaders said: “They must vote only in the national interest to preserve the unity of Nigeria. This country belongs to all of us and we all have equal stakes. Any attempt by any group of people to cling to political power in perpetuity to the exclusion of the rest of Nigeria will be disastrous.
“The political class should be reminded that the basis of any viable democracy, especially in a country as diverse and complex as Nigeria, is a fair and equal sharing of power, therefore, we reiterate our appeal to all lovers of peace and equity in Nigeria, especially our people of Southern Nigeria and the Middle Belt region, to reject any political party that fails to zone its presidential ticket to the south.
“It is to be noted, without a doubt, that the nation is at a tipping point, therefore, we strongly urge the leaders of Nigeria; true patriots, statesmen and women, to intervene in the political process to save the country from the reckless endangerment of its future corporate existence by the intrigues and avoidable maneuvers of certain selfish politicians.