- The conversation concerning the 2023 presidential elections is still ongoing
- A former Nigerian Bar Association chairman, Chief Olisa Agbakoba, SAN, has joined the conversation
- Agbakoba, a human rights activist, is not interested in where the president comes from, but his passion for the job
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A human rights lawyer and former Nigerian Bar Association chairman, Chief Olisa Agbakoba, SAN, has kicked against the zoning of the presidency.
According to him, Nigeria needs a president who is passionate about the country and has the type of passion Late Colonel Odimegwu Ojukwu had for Biafra.
Ojukwu was a Nigerian military officer and politician who served as the military governor of the Eastern Region of Nigeria in 1966 and the leader of the breakaway Republic of Biafra from 1967 to 1970.
In an interview with Daily Sun, Agbakoba stressed the need for the devolution of powers if the country is to make progress.
“If you have relevant small presidents in different and diverse sub nationalities, there are some people who will like to be presidents of sub nationalities.
“Don’t forget that Ahmadu Bello qualified to be Nigeria’s prime minister, he gave it to Balewa and stayed as premier of Northern Nigeria; don’t forget that Awolowo was the premier of Western Nigeria, he gave it to Akintola and went to be the leader of the opposition.
“Tell me whether that can happen today; whether Nigerian president can call his deputy to come and be the president, let him go and be the governor of Anambra state. It is not possible. We have to be honest with ourselves and say that we are living in an environment that is flawed, and unless we address the flaw, we won’t be strong,” he said.
He reiterated his stance against the rotation of the presidency in the country, saying the reason politicians jostle to be the leader of the country is that the president is the only relevant person.
His words: “The reason there is so much fighting over the Nigerian presidency is that he is the alpha and omega; everything starts and stops at the bus stop of whoever is the Nigerian president and that has to change.
“I’m not interested in where the president comes from, whether Igbo, Hausa, Yoruba, Ijaw, Tiv, etc, I want a president who is passionate about Nigeria; in fact, I want a president whose passion for Nigeria equals that of Ojukwu’s passion for Biafra.
“Ojukwu’s passion is unrivalled. If we have a leader who exhibits that type of passion, it is the number one thing I’m looking for, wherever he comes from, I’m not interested.”
In a related development, another Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Chief Oba Maduabuchi, recently stated that the southeast is not ready for the 2023 presidency.
Chief Maduabuchi said Igbos must accept power is never given, it is something you must take, adding that the Igbo do not seem to be properly organized or have the necessary orientation to galvanize themselves and make a challenge for the presidency.
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