Daily Trust

A word on zoning of presidency


Permit me to add my voice to one of the resolution­s of the Southern Nigerian governors’ forum in the communique of their meeting of 5th July, 2021, held in Lagos.

The forum, which is made up of 17 governors from APC, PDP and APGA, resolved that the next president of Nigeria should come from Southern Nigerian.

To start with, the cardinal objective of democracy is to better the lot of the people by delivering democratic dividends. True dividend of democracy can only be attained through leaders who are elected based on their competence, patriotism, honesty, commitment and result orientatio­n and not based of their ethnic, regional and/or religious considerat­ions.

Let me also correct

a misconcept­ion on the concept of “majority” in democracy. The true meaning of the concept is not about ethnic, religious or regional strength and or population, but about the ability of a candidate to convince the majority of the electorate to vote for him based on his manifesto and programmes irrespecti­ve of his background.

An ideal democracy presuppose­s that a politician from a minority ethnic group or region and or religion will constitute a majority in a democratic contest if he or she has the ability to win the majority of vote casts in an election. On the other hand, a politician from a major ethnic group or region or religion could be in minority if he or she lacks the ability to convince the electorate in a democratic contest.

Democracy presuppose­s leaders to be elected based on their political ideology or manifesto and or programmes and not primordial sentiments. In a democratic setting, power is gotten through belonging to the political process not just given.

Nigerian politician­s must possess the ability to build electoral consensus around themselves irrespecti­ve of their religion, ethnic group or region.

Democracy does not require rotation or zoning. Anybody who wants to govern from whatever ethnic group or region must feel free to do so by belonging to the political process.

Nigeria as a multi-ethnic country does not need a president for the Yoruba or

Igbo or Hausa or Kanuri or Ijaw or Ibibio but a president for all Nigerians anchored on justice and fairness. As a multi-religious country we do not need a president for the Muslims or Christians or animists and or traditiona­lists but a president for all Nigerians.

No ethnic group, region or religion in the federation is an island of milk and honey or bread and butter. We are all in it together! Socio-economic challenges are everywhere. Let’s have a consensus on leaders that are competent, patriotic, honest and resultorie­nted irrespecti­ve of their religion, ethnic group or region.

May God bless Nigeria!

Nurudeen Dauda wrote from Kaduna

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