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Presidency: North still has one more term – Owie

A former Senate Chief Whip, Roland Owie, on Sunday said the North would still retain power in 2023 to balance the period already spent by the South since 1999.

Owie, who spoke with journalists in his Benin home, said such arrangement was imperative in the spirit of equity, justice and fairness.

The 2023 presidency has been a source of controversy among the political class in the South who are already calling for a rotation of power to the southern part of Nigeria after the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) must have completed his second term in 2023.

But Owie said the South had had more time at the Presidency than the North since 1999.

The former Senate principal officer said, “Presidency came from South-West with Obasanjo even though he lost his unit, he lost his Local Government Area and even lost the entire zone but he became President of Nigeria and completed his two-term tenure.

“Then, power shifted to the North and produced Yar’Adua, one of the best presidents Nigeria has ever had.

“The man, who agreed that his election was flawed, and brought peace to the Niger Delta region, died and the vice- president took over.

“You can see the wisdom in the late General Sani Abacha’s constitution which was not adopted. He made provision for a second vice-president from the zone that produces the president.

“If we had adopted the Abacha constitution, it means when Yar’Adua died, the vice- president from his zone would have taken over, we would not have been where we are today.

“Yar’Adua died and (his vice, Dr Goodluck) Jonathan took over and completed the remaining years in their joint tenure and also secured another four years.

“If there were no greedy leaders, my suggestion at our South-South leader’s meeting that Jonathan should allow somebody from the North to run for the presidency since age was still on his side should have been adopted.

“However, those who felt that they owned the PDP, who were not there when PDP was formed lured the man and pushed him to go for a third term.

“Today, when you calculate, after Buhari’s tenure expires in 2023, the North will have four years and 244 days to complete their own quota of the presidency.

“So, it is not the turn of the South yet. When there is no justice, there can’t be peace. So the slot for 2023 is for the North,” he said.

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