Shehu Sani, a former senator, has said power rotation ahead of the 2023 presidential election “cannot be done on the altar of threat and intimidation”.
Sani, who represented Kaduna Central Senatorial District in the eighth National Assembly, said this in an interview on Friday.
Southern governors had insisted that the region must produce the next president, while their northern counterparts argued that zoning is unconstitutional.
But according to the former federal lawmaker, the political elites need to gather around a table and make decisions for the unity of the country.
He recommended that the principle of power rotation should e added to the constitution, arguing that one region does not need to dominate power so long in the interest of unity and peace of the country.
“I think to solve this problem, this needs to be clearly stated in our constitution and it should be written in the language that there would be no interpretation whether it is Igbo, Hausa, Yoruba and Ijaw,” Sani said on Channels Television.
“If the presidency is in the north for eight years, it should be in the south for eight years so that there will be no need for a lawyer or legal luminary to explain this thing to us.
“If we are going to sustain this country, we need equity, justice, fairness and fair play and ensure that one part of the country does not dominate power for a long time.
“But it cannot be done on the altar of threat and intimidation. These are issues that can be resolved between the political elites in the north and the south on a table for the unity and peace of Nigeria.”
Sani, however, opined that Nigeria can have both zoning and competence as the criteria to decide who will be president in 2023.
He said: “Well, we can have both. All parts of Nigeria are blessed with competent leaders that can stir the ship of the Nigerian state for progress.
“As far as I’m concerned, I come from the part of the country that is virtually under the siege of terrorists and bandits. As I’m speaking to you now, it is difficult for me to move one kilometre outside of my own city without getting into the hands of terrorists.
“For me and my people, I believe that whoever is going to lead this country and provide security, protect our people, guarantee the safety of our people and family, we will welcome him.
“But if we look at the problems we face as a country today, the separatist agitation, the nepotism, the crises, the violence, and bloodshed, I think the rotation of power will address a number of issues.”