NATIONAL Alliance for Southern Presidency, NASP, 2020 yesterday, said presidential candidates from any political party who fail to understand the rotational presidency should forget its support in 2023.

 

NASP’s national co-chairman, Hon. Kenneth Ibe- Kalu, who stated this in Abuja during a briefing, said candidates seeking the support of the Southerners should have a deep understanding of the marginalization being faced by the south region in the hands of northern leaders.

 

Ibe-Kalu further said that the northerners have failed to abide by the idea of rational Presidency, which they said started during the 1995 National Constitutional Conference under the regime of the late Head of State, General Sani Abacha.

 

He insisted that the Southern part of the country sees the ambition of the north to retain the Presidency as a ploy to use this position to secure juicy political privileges for their own people at the detriment of the people from the southern part of the country.

 

“This sad experience was created in the annulment of the June 12, 1993, presidential election won by late Moshood Kashimawo Abiola, a southerner. In an attempt to rationalize ethnicity, it should be understood that democracy is a flexible social concept that must be designed to fit into the peculiar circumstances of different nations.

 

“In Nigeria, feelings of marginalization and social Injustice, powered by the long political dominance of the north creating tension between ethnic groups about the proper interpretation of the Presidential turn, led to the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, to enunciate the zoning and rotation of Presidency between north and south in the Constitution.

 

“We must not forget that the formal setting where zoning and rotation of power were first introduced and won adhere, was the Constitutional Conference of 1994 to 1995. The conference reached an agreement on two volatile issues:  it accepted zoning and rotation of power and demarcated the country into six geopolitical zones.

 

“It is important to recollect the positions of northern delegates in that conference, while most of the southern delegates endorsed the demarcation of the country into six geopolitical zones and of power amongst them,  northern counterparts moved from total rejection of the idea of rotation to reluctant acceptance,” Ibe-Kalu said.

 

The group also said it would be involved in the selection of candidates and would not support a party in that zone’s its presidential candidate ticket outside the southern region come 2023, and shall effectively mobilize youths and other Nigerians to reject divisive tendencies using their votes.