JOE EFFIONG, UYO
Political leaders on the platform of South South Presidency 2023 Advocacy Group, have called for the zoning of the presidency back to the South South region in order to complete its tenure truncated in in 2015.
According to the group, “the manner Nigerians ganged up to push out the only president of South South extraction in the history of Nigeria in 2015 was unfair, and such political wounds could only be if the presidency is zoned to the South South by all political parties.”
Addressing the press in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State on Saturday, the protem chairman of the group ,Chief Diekivie Ikiogha, alongside other leaders like Charles Udonwa, Didi Opiuyo, Okon It’s, Uwamose Amadasun, among others, group said they were committed to producing a president of South South extraction come 2023.
In the words; “The group will reach out to all stakeholders in the South South geopolitical region, including governors, irrespective of their political affiliation, to secure their buy-in into the project of South-South Presidency 2023.
“The group positions itself as a strong political platform in the South-South region in defence of the region’s political ethos. Consequently, it will work assiduously for the emergency of a strong South South President during the next general election.
“This group accepts and stands by the leaders of the Southern and Middle belt that no South South person acceptd to be or aspires to become vice presidential candidate or chairman of any political party in the country.”
On the current agitation for changing Nigeria’s name to United African Republic or whatever name, the South South Presidency 2023 Group, said it was neither among those advocating any change of name nor in league with those asking for Nigeria to split.
It however urged the president, national assembly, security agencies, traditional and religious leaders to step up effort towards addressing issues that have caused and ignited the current security challenges so as to secure the sovereignty of the country while protecting lives and property.
The group also called on the national assembly to create a platform that would enable Nigerians to give themselves a people’s constitution that would allow for fiscal federalism and a home grown democratic governance structure.
While expressing their concern about the state of underdevelopment of the Niger Delta vis-a-vis the contribution of the zone to the federation account, the group urged the federal government to make haste and inaugurate the NDDC board to enable it achieve the objectives and purpose for which it was established in order to sustain the prevailing peace in the region.