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North Central leaders advocate competence over zoning in 2023

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Presidency seal. Photo: TWITTER/NIGERIAGOV

Leaders from the North Central zone have declared that competence must be allowed to determine the next President of Nigeria.

At a press conference yesterday in Abuja, the Secretary-General of the North Central Peoples Conference (NCPC), Khaleel Bolaji, pointed out that the Southern governors’ position that the next President should emerge from their zone could polarise the country.

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Bolaji also stated that nothing was wrong in allowing zones, which had never produced a democratically-elected President to have a shot, provided it was based on competence.

NCPF said the North Central was particularly shortchanged in the scheme of things in Nigeria, citing Bauchi State in North East, which produced more heads of federal parastatals than the entire North Central states combined.

“If you want to consider it on the basis of regions, South East, North East and North Central should be considered for the Presidency in 2023. We are out to make sure that the North Central is not shortchanged in the Nigerian project. We hold this country. Without the North Central, there’s no Nigeria. We have not been given our right place in the country.

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“In fact, since Nigeria returned to democracy, North Central has had more votes during general elections than the South West. But they make more noise about it. Our region is the food basket of the nation. There has been this agitation that the Presidency should go to the South. This agitation is further dividing the country. We should focus on competence,” the group stated.

NCPC argued that Nigeria, as a country, needed the right person to manage it, irrespective of where the person comes from. “Even if Northern governors come out today and say power must shift to the region, we will oppose them too. We are Nigerians. Anybody from North Central who comes out, we will support him or her,” the leaders added.

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