The Conference of 2019 South-East All Progressives Congress (APC) House of Assembly Candidates has appealed to the leadership of the party to respect the existing zoning arrangement in the 2023 presidential election.
They said that this was not the time for anyone to think of altering the rotation of power between Northern and Southern Nigeria. Noting that the South East is the only zone yet to produce President of Nigeria since the return to democratic rule, they said that the zone deserves the 2023 slot in the spirit of equity, natural justice and fairness.
A statement in Enugu on Friday, by the Conference Chairman, Hon. Afam Ezenwafor and Secretary, Hon George Ugwuja, said the development had triggered agitations for secession, stressing that the time to make it right was now.
“Since the return to democratic rule, Nigeria’s political system has been sustained and political tensions averted or subdued due to an effective cooperation between regional political coalitions which is a major element for this stability.
“Besides the constitutional provisions on proportional representation in government, other extra-constitutional and internal political arrangements among regional elites, such as zoning and rotation, have contributed substantially towards stability. Every other geopolitical zone has served and now it is the turn for South East Nigeria.
“We are consulting to stimulate discussions ahead of time. As a country, it is not this time that we can afford to change our zoning formula; now is not the right time to ignore ethnic tensions and promote marginalization.
“We are here to make our stand clear that it is the turn of the South-east and our leaders are trained and ready to lead Nigeria. To match our words with action, we have scaled up consultations at national level. Some of the stakeholders we have visited include Hon. Minister of Science and Technology, His Excellency, Ogbonnaya Onu, Minister of State for Education, Hon. Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba, former Governor of Anambra State, His Excellency, Chukwuemeka Ezeife. We have also reached out to political stakeholders in North Central and we are looking out for a joint press conference in October 2020.”