I sympathize with Igbos but zoning presidency is unconstitutional – Former Nasarawa state Governor, Abdullahi Adamu

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Amid calls for the presidency to be zoned to the south-east as the region has not held the position since 1999, former Governor Nasarawa state and senator representing Nasarawa South has said that zoning the presidency to any ethnic group is unconstitutional.

Adamu who responded to a question on power shift to the South at a press briefing in Abuja on Monday September 13, stated that the “constitution says you can only become president through the ballot box and every party must find a way of selling itself in a manner that will garner the kind of votes that will win the election”. 

Stating that he sympathizes with the South-East region, the Senator also averred that zoning of the presidency is wishful thinking as one cannot talk of merit and zoning. 

Adamu said; 

 “My answer to that is constitution. Nowhere in the Nigerian constitution that says we should zone any public office.

“There is federal character, but not that parties must zone positions for presidency during election. The constitution is being reviewed. If you want a specific provision that a presidential position be zoned, you say it, and tell us how you want it to be zoned.

“You can’t just wish away a situation that is fundamental to a country. You can’t talk of merit and talk of zoning. You can’t. Let’s just go by merit. Let every party find a way of selling itself in a manner that will garner the votes that will win the election. It’s as simple as that.

“Do we have anything like that in the American constitution? Are we more democratic than them?  It is democracy. Why do you want to change it? Wishful thinking only.

“Yes, somebody is saying the South East has not had a president. I agree, and I sympathise with them. But the constitution says you can only become president through the ballot box. And we have been saying it during elections that every vote must count. So, why do you want to zone?  Zone your mind if you want to zone.”

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