ZONING IS NORTH WEST AGENDA
A Nigerian businessman based in the United States of America, U.S.A, Mr. Daniel Richard, has declared that the emergence of President Goodluck Jonathan and his deputy, Architect Namadi Sambo on the corridors of power is a divine intervention by God to void the controversial zoning system fashioned out by the leadership of People's Democratic Party (PDP).
Richard, in an interactive session with Daily Sun, also said that South-South has been in political alliance with the North before Nigeria's attainment of independence, hence the Presidential bid of President Goodluck Jonathan in 2011 would serve as a litmus test to the North to either sustain the existing political alliance or discard it for good-a situation which he said would amount to one of the greatest betrayal, in view of the fact that South-South has being keeping faith to the alliance since time immemorial.
He said that the present political scenario was not created by Jonathan and, as a Nigerian, he has constitutional and moral rights to vie for and elective position in the country, thus the agitation by a section of the North that he should relax his bid was uncalled for and Jonathan should not be intimidated to stop his bid. Richard who is also a public affairs commentator said that Jonathan is an embodiment of generational change who is not beclouded by pre-modial sentiments, and he has won the hearts of world leaders hence Nigerians within the country and in diaspora should support Jonathan's bid for the Presidency in 2011.
He also told the Daily Sun that the political Scenario in Nigeria as of now, would test the geniuness and faithfulness of the North to the claim that the South-South geopolitical zone has been in long standing political alliance and has remained politically supportive to the North before and post Independence Nigeria .
Richard also said that it was a divine intervention for the providence to expose the Northern Elite, especially the North-West, that regarded the North-East and North central as not being true Northerners as the North-Westerners were also concerned about a Nigerian President emerging from their endive other than any party of the North-central or North-East.
The public affairs commentator argued that if the South-South geopolitical zone remained faithful and supportive to the political cause of the North before the attainment of independence and after, the Northern elite should reciprocate the gesture by being supportive of a South-South Nigerian President, instead of being incisive in their statements in the media.
'Why should Northern elite not support President Goodluck Jonathan if he should bid to contest for the Presidency of this country when an opportunity has offered itself at his door step?' he queried.
Richard decried the propaganda of the Northern elite on zoning system, which was not a constitutional issue, arguing that if the North, which claims that with its numerical strength it could grab political power at anytime should then not insist on zoning system.
He claimed that it was mere hypocrisy of the North-West in particular, that had enjoyed working alliance with the South-South all this while should overnight say that President Goodluck Jonathan's aspiration should be thwarted while in the real sense, it was Nigerians from the North-West that were insisting on the zoning system.
According to him, it has become more apparent to the North-central and North-East that North-West was out to propagate its own selfish interest in the Name of Overall Northern agenda.
The U.S based businessman maintained it was glaring that North-West was not getting the desired maximum support it used to have from the North-East and North-central for it ascendancy to the topmost seat in the country it employed propaganda to struggle for power in the name of the North so that the Presidency should be zoned to the North for it grab.
Richard said the political Scenario in Nigeria today, is an indication that God has objected the zoning formular, hence the controversy of Acting Presidency of Jonathan was peacefully resolved even before he was confirmed President of Nigeria following the demise of President Goodluck Jonathan.
He condemned the Northern elite, from North-West, for remaining anti establishment even when it was glaring that President Goodluck Jonathan was a performer, despite the fact that he was a leader Nigerians never bargained for to be in power but that the divine intervention of God had brought the to power.
According to him, the zoning formular was mere political gimmick spearheaded by the PDP, as it negotiated power the military He said this decision cannot be binding on the rest of Nigeria as the PDP was not even a mass party that represented the overall interest of Nigerians.
He further argued that if the zoning system had been acceptable to Nigerians, the Yorubas should have voted in favour of their son, former President Olusegun Obasanjo enmasse at the inception of the political dispensation in 1999, instead of opting to vote for a rival political party. Richard described the Northern elite that is agitating for zoning system as not only being unfair to the rest of Nigerians untruthful to themselves because they were beclouded by sentiments, especially those of them from the minority North who were used by North-West to garner support to themselves in the name of one North.
He observed that in 1978, Alhaji Adamu Ciroma, from a minority North, from the North-East geopolitical zone could have emerged the Presidential candidate of the defunct National Party of Nigeria, NPN, but was manipulated and the ticket given to Alhaji Shehu Aliyu Shagari, a North-Westerner because it was perceived that Ciroma was from minority North, from the North-East of the country.
Richard he said many Northerners, especially from the North-central and North-East were not comfortable with the zoning system of the PDP because the lot would not fall on them, even as the two geopolitical zones had capacity to produce an acceptable Nigerian President. According to him, the two other geopolitical zones in the North have become disenchanted with the destiny which in practice only favours North-West.
He described a pan political association, Northern political leaders' forum, as a bunch of unemployed elders working for political reverence and to gain political capital out of the agitation for zoning system and rotational presidency. According to him, the minority groups in the North were apparently supportive of a South-South President, particularly, if President Goodluck Jonathan would bid for the Presidency, to avoid the North being branded as a betrayer because opportunity has offered itself for a President Goodluck Jonathan, from the South-South, to serve the Nigeria.
'Just as many Northerners from a minority extraction are short-changed, so also many South-Southerners were short-changed in this country. For them not to be short-changed continuously, the minority groups should support themselves, irrespective of their geopolitical locations. On Nigeria at 50 of its nationhood, Richard maintained that Nigerian leaders were not focused but selfish and parochial in their thinking neither were they prepared to be on the saddle of leadership of the country.
He observed that the Nigerian leaders' ill-preparedness, has contributed immensely to the non-progress of the nation and for the fact that Nigeria nationhood had a faulty start. He stated that late Prime Minister, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Belewa was not prepared to serve the nation when he came on board neither were the incessant military leaders like Aguiyi Ironsi, who had just arrived from Congo for Peace Keeping, nor General Yakubu Gowon also prepared for the saddle of leadership of the country as at the time he came on board.
Besides, he said Nigeria was being run without handing over notes by successive administrations because every Nigerian leader ran the country as his own personal estate and high degree of responsibility. Nigeria, he said, should go to the drawing board because it was yet to be called a nation in view of growing parochial interests, expressing wonder why a country like Nigeria should be run for upward of 19 years without handover note which would show what were done right and those not done right since it was not a personal estate.
He also observed that there has not being true democracy in Nigeria because most of those in power now came into the corridors of power through litigations in court which indicated that they were not genuinely in power through the votes of the Nigerian electorates. According to him, since the inception of democracy in Nigeria in 1999, no less than 37 governorship elections were in court on allegations of electoral malpractices, manipulations in the electoral system thuggery and host of other reasons which indicated immaturity of the Nigerian political system.
Similarly, he said many National Assembly Members were in the decision making saddle of the nation through court verdicts because of the desperation for them to be law makers for Nigerians even when they could not meet the requirements, hence lack of vibrancy in the state and national assemblies. Nigerians, he said, should go back to the drawing board as many of them never knew where they were coming from and where they were going, stressing that acknowledgement of that would make Nigerian to chart a new course passionately.
Richard said Nigerians should make best use of the present situation they found themselves as they never bargained for it but by the divine intervention and human efforts or parochial interests should not be allowed to over ride the overall interest of the Nigerian populace. He stressed that if its the divine intervention that President Goodluck Jonathan should re-contest for the Presidency, no Jupita could stop him nor could zoning or no zoning stop his ascendancy to the Presidency of the country.
Richard, charged Nigerians to bury their primordial interest for the sake of the nation, as President Goodluck Jonathan had proved to have the capacity of becoming Nigeria 's next President because he has a large heart to accommodate every Nigerian irrespective of where he came from. The Adamawa born businessman, however charged Nigerian media at this critical time of Nigeria 's history not to sound sentimental or parochial but to be objective and informative.
According to him, the mindset of President Goodluck Jonathan may not beclouded by desperation to be in power again as he is taking one day at a time.