2019: Akure monarch reveals important criterion to be considered in choosing presidential candidates
– Deji of Akure called for use of merit as against zoning in choosing presidential candidates
– The Akure monarch said this when Professor Moghalu, a presidential aspirant, paid him a courtesy visit
– Moghalu also shared the monarch’s view saying that zoning has failed the country
The Deji of Akure, His Royal Majesty, Oba Aladetoyinbo Ogunlade Aladelusi, on Thursday, June 7, called for the ending of geographical zoning in the determination of who should lead Nigeria as president.
HRM Aladelusi made the call while receiving in his palace Professor Kingsley Moghalu, presidential aspirant of the Young Progressive Party (YPP) in the 2019 elections, Vanguard reports.
gathered that Moghalu was at the palace to pay a courtesy visit to the Deji.
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In an internal arrangement within then-ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) at the inception of the Fourth Republic in 1999, the presidency was to rotate between the northern and southern parts of the country, presumably every eight years. But the extra-constitutional arrangement, which presumed a one-party dominance of the presidency, collapsed in 2011 when then-President Goodluck Jonathan contested and won the presidential election after succeeding President Umaru Yar’Adua, who died in office three years into his tenure.
Deji, however, called for merit, instead of zoning, as the main qualifying criterion for deciding who should lead the country.
He said: “If President Buhari’s son is qualified, he should be able to run for the office.”
He cited the example of the United States, where George W. Bush became president eight years after his father, George H. W. Bush, left office as president.
In his reaction, Moghalu said the advanced countries of the world elect their leaders mainly on the merits of their policies and qualifications.
He said choosing leaders on the basis of their capacity, competence and character, as opposed to their ethnicity, is critical for any country to make progress, and that this principle applies to Nigeria.
“Zoning has failed. After 19 years of zoning, the country is divided, the economy remains weak and more Nigerians are trapped below the poverty line,” he said.
Moghalu said he is running for president in 2019, based on his education, leadership experience gained over 17 years in the United Nations (during which period he rose from the entry level to the highest career rank, helping to rebuild broken nations, including Croatia, Cambodia and Rwanda), knowledge of economic management as a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and his vision to lead Nigeria into the 21st century with great ideas and resolve.
He said: “I am running for president, not as an Igbo candidate, not as a Yoruba candidate, and not as a candidate of the north. I am running as a well-qualified Nigerian.”
The erudite professor, who until recently taught International Business and Public Policy at the prestigious Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University in Massachusetts, USA, said his vision for Nigeria was based on a tripod: first, to heal our country and build the nation; second, to wage a decisive war against poverty and unemployment; and, third, to restore Nigeria’s standing in the world.