BY Dyepkazah Shibayan
The Citizens Network for Peace and Development in Nigeria (CNPDN), a support group of former President Goodluck Jonathan, has asked the All Progressives Congress (APC) to nominate Godswill Akpabio, a former minister, as the senate president.
Akpabio, a former senate minority leader, has not declared any intention to run for the position.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Tuesday, Francis Wainwei, CNPDN national secretary, said Akpabio’s choice would reduce the acrimony that follows the struggle for the position among the geo-political zones.
Wainwei said the south-south should be compensated because Bola Tinubu, the president-elect, got 25 percent votes in all the six states in the zone.
“Currently, Godswill Akpabio, former governor of Akwa Ibom, is the only ranking senator from the south-south that is a member of the 10th national assembly,” he said.
“The electoral contribution of the south-south greatly helped the ruling party to clinch the presidency in the 2023 presidential election. It is, therefore, necessary for the party to consolidate its electoral success in the zone by zoning the senate presidency to it.
“It will also drastically reduce the usual acrimony that characterises such struggle for power among the geo-political zones, thereby, reducing unnecessary distractions for the peaceful and smooth take-off of the new dispensation under the President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“In the same vein, we are calling on the ruling party to also zone all the available political positions equitably among the six geopolitical zones, to strengthen national unity and cohesion.
“As patriotic citizens, our primary interest is the unity and prosperity of the nation, hence, this clarion call to the ruling party to do the needful by promoting government of national inclusion, equity, and fairness to all the geopolitical zones.
“We are therefore, calling on all patriotic Nigerians who truly want to experience the Nigeria of our dreams to prevail on the APC to zone the position of the senate president of the 10th senate to the south-south geopolitical zone and also prevail on their senators-elect to facilitate and ensure the emergence of Akpabio as the senate president of the 10th senate and the leader of the 10th national assembly.”