The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is creating political chaos in Nigeria. Note that the principle of rotational presidency was not contested until Dr. Goodluck Jonathan decided to take undue advantage of the death of President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. All the major opposition political parties chose their presidential candidates from the North-west in 2011, to indicate they found rotational presidency reasonable and just.
Surprisingly, confusionists keep saying rotational presidency is undemocratic, as if democracy implies lack of political order. They also argue that it will lead to choosing mediocres as President; they have not indicated which zones harbour only mediocres, so that we can exclude such zones from the rotation roster. Then, they have not told concerned Nigerians how else the nation can engender political equity, peace, and progress. They should explain also why the Jonathan-led administration has refused to allow an electoral commission whose principal officers are not chosen by the PDP.
The PDP and its beneficiaries should explain the foregoing, and outline their proposal for equity, peace, and progress in Nigeria. I propose that the President should come from (Yar’Adua’s) North-west zone in 2015 to serve a single term of four years, and afterwards the baton should pass to the South-east, since Jonathan (from South-south) has spent many years in the presidency. Thereafter, the presidency should rotate from zone to zone, on north-south basis.
The most recent act of intolerance and desperation betrayed by the PDP was the seizing of Offa Local Government from the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), using inter-communal clash as an excuse. Offa is the only local government won in Kwara state by the opposition political party (the ACN). The long-standing bad blood between Offa and Erin-Ile (in another local government) which resurfaced recently provided an opportunity the PDP had been looking-for to seize Offa local government.
The state Governor, AbdulFatah Ahmed, also sacked the other chairman to convey appearance of even-handedness, and replaced both with caretakers. I enjoin the Offa people to endure the humiliation, hold their peace, but never succumb to intimidation and deceptive “gifts”. Nigeria must sack the PDP after many years of chaos, disorientation, and retrogression.
I appeal to the All Progressives Congress (APC) to solidify rotational presidency, and work for the establishment of a truly independent electoral commission whose principal officers will not be chosen by the partisan President. I enjoin support for General Muhammadu Buhari to be the presidential candidate; he is a highly trustworthy person from the North-west. At worse, there should be primary election, rather than begging the General to drop his ambition.
• Pius Oyeniran Abioje, Ph. D,
University of Ilorin.