- Obong Victor Attah says zoning should be respected by all constituent parts of Nigeria before the 2023 polls
- The former governor of Akwa Ibom state also spoke on the various agitations in some parts of the country
- Attah, 82, however, said he won't speak on the mounting insecurity in the country until a major security meeting is held
A former Akwa Ibom state governor, Obong Victor Attah has stated that zoning must be respected in the 2023 presidential elections in Nigeria.
Ex-governor Attah made the declaration during an interview with Legit.ng in his Abuja residence on Monday, April 19.
He stated that he agreed with the position of the Borno state governor that zoning is a covenant that should be respected.
“If you listen to what Zulum, the governor of Borno state said, he called it a covenant. He didn't say convention. It is a covenant. And I would like to think that people should respect covenants.
“Though, people have to go forward and present a position and negotiate so the whole country can accept.
“It can be your turn, but if you can't present a good enough candidate and convince the people, they can resist. But, normally, it is expected that zoning should mean power goes round without any argument.”
Sharing his thoughts on what he thinks is responsible for the mounting agitation in some parts of the country, the former governor said:
“It is due to the bad system of the country that we are operating. Whatever you do with this unitary system of government, you will not succeed. Nobody will succeed.
“It is a lot more difficult to achieve what we want to achieve as a nation, under a presidential system of government. That is why my advocacy for a long time has been true federalism practiced under a parliamentary system of government.”
On the security challenges in the southeast and the south-south, Obong Attah said:
“The national security adviser called a meeting of the governors of the southeast, and some governors from the south-south, and I was invited as an elder statesman and all the service chiefs were there.
“The ministers, from both the southeast and south-south, were there, the minister of interior.
“That meeting was expected to discuss the emerging security challenges in both regions. So, I would not like to pre-empt the meeting.
“Because that meeting started, but a signal came that the president was soon to arrive, and they had to leave to go and receive the president.
“Because that meeting has not reached a conclusion, I can speak a lot about national security. but let the meeting take a position before I decide what to say.”
President General of the group, Professor George Obiozor, stated this during a press conference in Enugu state.
He warned the federal government to rethink, reflect and act fast before the prophecy that Nigeria won't stay together as one country in no distant time becomes a national reality and a national tragedy foretold.
In a related development, a lot of stakeholders in Nigeria are becoming increasingly sceptical about the possibility of achieving a free, fair, and credible election in 2023 amidst the worsening security situation in the country.
With the current trend of insecurity in the different geo-political zones of the country, there is a general apprehension that things could get worse before the next election.