NIGERIA’s ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has denied suggestions that it has zoned the 2023 presidency to the south of the country as part of a grand zoning plan to ensure all elective positions are covered by all parts of the country.
Earlier this week, it was reported that the APC has agreed a zoning formula that involved the 2023 presidential ticket being zoned to the south of the country and the vice presidency to the north. Under the programme, the senate president will go to the south, the deputy senate president to the north, the while speakership of the House of Representatives will go to the north, while the position of deputy will go to the south.
Under the programme, the national chairman will go to the north, the national secretary to the south, the national treasurer to the south, the financial secretary to the north, the legal officer to the north and the welfare officer to the south. In addition, the office of the auditor is zoned to north, that of national youth leader to the south, the national woman leader will go to the south, as will publicity secretary and the leader responsible for persons with disabilities.
However, John Akpanudoedehe, the national secretary of the party caretaker committee has denied that the party took this decision. He maintained the party will required to make extensive consultations before such arrangement would be arrived at, adding zoning of offices is yet to be on the table of the caretaker committee.
Mr Akpanudoedehe said: “I want to mute the speculation and point out that the list is not from us the caretaker committee as the president is not even in town. There is no way such a decision will be taken without consulting with the president, the governors and other major stakeholders.”
“Let me say that zoning is not for the caretaker committee alone. It has to do with the president, it has to do with other major stakeholders, it has to do with a lot of people and at the last caretaker committee meeting we had, we did not discuss that.
“People should disregard the list. We are focused on delivering our mandate and we are to do it rightly”
He blamed the list being circulated on individuals interested in contesting for one office or the other in the party, insisting the caretaker committee cannot be pressurised into taking a wrong decision. Mr Akpanudoedehe added that the party will make extensive consultations before such arrangement would be arrived at.