MEMBERS of the Hausa community in Cross River State have promised Ohaneze Ndigbo that they will be backing the southeast geo-political zone in its quest to produce Nigeria’s next president come 2023.
Although not constitutional, Nigeria’s component parts have a gentleman’s agreement that the presidency will rotate between the north and the south of the country. President Buhari’s tenure will end in 2023 and being a Fulani northern Muslim, it is expected that the next president will come from one of the three geo-political zones in southern Nigeria.
Since the return to democracy in 1999, the southwest has produced President Olusegun Obasanjo and the south-south President Goodluck Jonathan, so come 2023, the presidency should automatically go to the southeast. Of late, certain politicians from northern Nigeria have threatened to tear up the gentleman’s agreement come 2023, saying another Fulani candidate should take over from President Muhammadu Buhari.
However, the paramount leader of the Hausa and Fulani communities in Cross River State, Alhaji Salisu Abba Lawan said they would be backing an Igbo presidential candidate. Revealing this while playing host to a delegation of Ohaneze Ndigbo members in his palace in the Bogobiri area of Calabar, the Sarikin Hausa said it was only fair to do so.
Alhaji Lawan said: “Let me thank the Ohaneze Ndigbo for coming to strengthen the bone of friendship between Hausa and Fulani communities and the Igbo brothers living in the state. We cannot claim to have a country that belongs to all of us while leaving a major component out of the leadership of this country.
“I am assuring you that Hausa and Fulani communities in the state would be educated on why an Igbo should be allowed to be president of the country in 2023.” Ugorji Nwabueze the president of the Cross River State chapter of Ohaneze Ndigbo, who led the Igbo delegation, said the request by the southeast to be given a chance was in the interest of justice, noting that all Nigerians stood to benefit from an Igbo presidency.