Saleh Alhassan, National Secretary of Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, has said the south may not produce the country’s next president over the decision of governors from the region to ban open grazing.
Alhassan, who stated this in an interview with Tribune over the weekend, said the resolution reached by the southern governors in Lagos State on July 5, will leave Fulani herders with nowhere to go.
According to him, the situation will turn the north against the south, thereby jeopardizing whatever hope the latter has as far as ruling the country in 2023 is concerned.
“They (the Southern governors) are hungry for power. Why are they making open grazing an issue? Is it the only problem in the country? They may not even get the power”, he said.
He maintained that herdsmen cannot leave the south because governors have not provided alternative arrangements before slamming a deadline on open grazing.
“Fulani herdsmen cannot move to anywhere. The Southern governors have not made any alternative (provision) for them. You cannot just drive away an economic group”, Alhassan stated.
The national secretary of the Fulani social-cultural group further said that the outcome of the Southern Governors Forum meeting may be to heat up the polity, saying, “it is like they had some feelers”.
Alhassan said herders are not concerned about where presidency is zoned to in 2023, but warned the southern governors against blackmailing the north to get what they want.
“For herders, it doesn’t matter where the president comes from but if they want power to move to the South, should it be through blackmail? It should be by negotiation, campaign and strategy as well as political understanding. And mind you, this thing is based on numerical strength.
“If they (Southern governors) want to blackmail the North, they may not get the presidency. They are only hungry for power with the direction they are going”, he explained.
He advised those interested in vying for the office of the presidency to start building their campaign structures, instead of resorting to blackmail.
“Let them begin to build structures, come out and campaign. “Is there any serious Igbo man that wants to be president? Have you seen any? It is not that people will just carry power and give you, you must work for it by building structures.
“So, if Tinubu wins the APC primary tomorrow, it is because he has built the structure and we will vote for him. Is he not a Southerner?”, he added.