From Gyang Bere, Jos
The Chief Executive Officer of the Institute of Human Virology, Nigeria (IHVN) and Chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Dr. Patrick Dakum said the country cannot afford to jettison zoning ahead of the 2023 General Election.
He noted that zoning is an arrangement put in place to alley the fear of domination and to ensure equity and justice in the political system.
Dr. Dakum disclosed this while speaking with Journalists in Jos and said the political zoning arrangement embraced since the beginning of the political dispensation has stabilized the country’s polity and watered down complain of political domination.
He explained that the concept was initiated to carry along every parts of the country irrespective of seize and population to have a sense of belonging, inclusion and participation in governance in the country.
”Origin of zoning is to give inclusion to every part of the country; we need to protect the minority and make them have a sense of belonging. We have not reached a level where we can jettison zoning.
“There is zoning even in US but in a different context. But in Nigeria, we talk about it in terms of political appointments. Our country is still being referring to as developing country; so we must protect the interest of the minority.”
Dr. Dakum added that zoning has no alternative because it gives people the freedom and opportunity to be involved in establishing and running the government of their choice at different level.
He said if specific areas are allowed to produce leadership based on their numerical strength in the country, that will breed bitterness and crisis on the long run.
“Meanwhile, I did not support zoning that did not respect qualification; you cannot say because of the zoning system you lower the bar. If we make it transparent, the country has enough qualified people everywhere.
“My support for zoning is without prejudice to qualification, skills and capability that goes with the office, like in Plateau State a local government can produce the entire State Executive, zoning is still important to ensure equity and fairness”.
Dr. Dakum condemned the postulation in some quarters that majority should always get the best in terms of distribution of resources and projects adding that the needs of every community should be put into consideration and also in line with their population and size.
“I think the need of the people should be put into consideration, resources should be spread irrespective of whether minority or majority, those in majority need amenities that will commensurate with their population just as the minority too need amenities that is commensurate with their population as well.
“Human needs do not understand minority and majority, so it should be based on the need of every community. God created the majority to protect the minority but not to oppress them, let us approach human issues according to their level of need”.
Dr. Dakum who is also aspiring to contest for the governorship of Plateau state comes 2023 commended those who had governed the state in the past and those still serving for the contributions to the development of the state.
“If you are not willing to be part of solution to problem don’t talk about it, to me it is a call to service because to whom much is given much is expected, if God has given me the opportunity to know what development is all about, I believe God has prepared me to serve”.