Barely a week after Malam Mamman Daura spoke against zoning of presidency ahead of the 2023 elections, Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna state has said that the next Nigerian President should come from the South.
Speaking in an interview with the Hausa Service of the BBC monitored by Blueprint Correspondent in Kaduna on Saturday, the governor equally cleared the air over his rumoured presidential ambition, saying that he has never shown interest in the presidency and he does not want to be president.
The governor noted that though the arrangement to rotate presidency among the various regions of Nigeria is unconstitutional, it is a gentleman political accord that must be respected by the two regions.
According to him: “The southern part of the country is supposed to produce the president come 2023; I don’t support a northerner to vie for the seat after President Muhammadu Buhari, based on Nigeria’s political arrangement.
“After President Muhammadu Buhari would have spent eight years by 2023, the right thing is that no northerner should contest, the south too should have its shot for eight years. I’m taking this position not because I agree that, that is how leadership should be selected, but because that is how Nigeria politics is for now.
“I believe there is no developed country across the world that considers leadership based on where someone comes from. However, in Nigerian politics, there is an arrangement that we all believe on rotational leadership. We are aware of that, anyone who denies that is wrong,” he said.
Speaking on reflecting zoning in Kaduna state, el-Rufa’i said that, while he is in support of zoning and rotational presidency, he is not in support of such arrangement in Kaduna.
“In Kaduna, I don’t work with people because they came from a particular zone, I instead work with you based on your capacity to deliver on the assigned task and your ability to keep public trust.”
According to governor el-Rufai, his rumoured presidential aspiration has been there since the time he was the FCT minister.
“It is a baseless speculation. I don’t want to be president; only God decides someone’s future whether you like it or not, I have never shown interest for the presidency,” el-Rufa’i said.