The former minister of state for education, Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba has said that the presidential candidates from northern Nigeria are in the race to make a statement.
Nwajiuba stated this in an interview with ThisDay, adding that the northern aspirants would withdraw from the race and support the bid for a South-East presidential candidate on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) if aspirants from the South-West quit the race.
Nwajiuba who recently resigned from Buhari’s cabinet stated that the southeast geopolitical zone should produce the next President on the grounds of national justice and fairness.
The former Minister accused politicians in the South-West of committing the same offence they had accused their northern counterparts of committing, asking, “Why should the South-West say the North should cede power to the South and that they must be the beneficiary?”
He said, “There are three people from the North who purchased the APC presidential forms. The president of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan; the governor of Kogi state, Yahaya Bello; and the governor of Jigawa state, Abubakar Mohammed Badaru.
“They all have the right credentials to be Nigeria’s president. They are men of foresight. They are from the North-East, North-Central and North-West.
“They are possibly in the contest to make a statement but if we are talking about national justice and fairness, we should only be thinking of the South-East. This is because it is the only zone in the South that has not produced a president since 1999.
“However, for them to be seeing about eight people from the South-West suddenly laying claims to the same argument they had against the North, makes it look very silly.
“This is because you cannot be accusing the North of something you are also perpetrating. Olusegun Obasanjo had been president for eight years; (Yemi) Osinbajo has been vice president since 2015.
“Why should the South-West say the North should cede power to the South and that they must be the beneficiary? How does that make any sense of any type? Yet, they are asking the young patriots in the North to cede power to them.
“I am sure if the South-West pulls out of the presidential race, aspirants from the North would also rest their ambitions and allow the South-East to produce (President Muhammadu) Buhari’s successor in 2023.”