2023: Plot to draft Jonathan into presidential race good for Nigeria, says Agbo
Against the background of renewed plots to draft former President Goodluck Jonathan into the 2023 presidential race, a former member of the National Assembly, Senator Anthony Agbo, has said the plan would not augur well for northern Nigeria.
Some northern chieftains of All Progressives Congress (APC) had allegedly initiated moves to woo the former president to the party to run for presidency in 2023.
The plot, it was gathered, was to ensure that after doing just one term in office, the presidency would return to the North in 2027.
But in an interaction with The Guardian, Agbo declared that bringing back the former president “can only be good for Nigeria and Nigerians, but shall without doubt accomplish the exact opposite of what the planners intended.”
Agbo, who represented Ebonyi North Senatorial District in the Senate, said a Jonathan’s presidency would “reinforce and complicate the problems which the northern political interest group intended it to solve.”
As one of the lawmakers that joined hands to midwife the transmutation of Jonathan from vice president to president after the death of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, Agbo stated: “Another presidential tenure in 2023 for Goodluck Jonathan will no doubt gladden the hearts of many Nigerians, because of his soft and humanist disposition to governance.
“But that would certainly end up as a nightmare for the northern interest group propagating it for the fact that at the end of that tenure in 2027, the agitation for Igbo presidency will become so fierce, so desperate and uncontrollable.
“When that happens, the North itself and the rest of Nigeria will have no option than to grant the Igbo a chance, thereby having the presidency in the South for three straight terms.”
Agbo, who is also a former Speaker of old Enugu State House of Assembly, argued that a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction would benefit the North more than it could ever benefit the Igbo.
He declared: “Igbo presidency would benefit the North even far more than any northern president can ever benefit the North as a result of the avowed Igbo liberal spirit and nationalistic dispositions.
“Due to the rising political awareness, the insistent and deafening cry for justice all over Nigeria, there seems to be no other way forward for our country than to take a bold and decisive step to heal the nation by breaking down the walls of suspicion, fear and inhibitions that separate us and assuage whatever genuine feelings that burden the major segments of the Nigerian nation.”