Tuesday, January 19, 2021



‘It’s absurd’ — el-Rufai kicks against zoning of leadership positions

‘It’s absurd’ — el-Rufai kicks against zoning of leadership positions
November 25
18:08 2020

Nasir el-Rufai, governor of Kaduna state, has again kicked against zoning of political leaders, saying no country progresses with such an arrangement.


Speaking at the Nigerian Economic Summit (#NES26) in Abuja, the governor said every qualified person should be given equal opportunity to contest for political positions.

In Nigeria, political offices — especially the presidency — are rotated on the basis of geographical zones, from the time of Olusegun Obasanjo up till the administration of President Muhamadu Buhari who is from Katsina state.

With the 2023 election roughly two years away, some Nigerians have started clamouring that the presidency should return to the south.


But speaking at a plenary session at the summit on Tuesday, el-Rufai said Nigeria has failed to make serious progress over the years because of the culture of rotating leaders.

The governor, who said leaders should not be selected by zones or political parties as this “will lead to inefficiency”, added that what can be done is “to give every society a framework of equal opportunity to take advantage of and prosper”.

“I do not believe that we should be driven in our politics and economics by distribution whether or not there is a logic behind it,” he said.


“In my honest view, Nigeria went wrong when we focused on distribution rather than production. We like to distribute and it has gone as far as saying that in a state, governorship should rotate; that is absurd.

“There is no country in the world that has made progress in the last 50 years that rotates its leaders. I think if we move away from this fixation about distribution to selecting or picking the best person to get the job done… when the job is done, everybody benefits.

“Right now, we are distributing this and we are not making any progress because the focus is on distribution.”

El-Rufai also said there is the need to have more youth in political offices, faulting a system where the majority young population is governed by “old people like me”.


“We can’t have a country with 90 percent of our population below the age of 40 all ruled by old people like me,” he said.

“We must have young people in government being trained to take over from us.”


  1. Frank
    Frank November 26, 03:47

    Zoning ensures inclusiveness participation of minorities. Nothing prevents the zone from feeding qualified persons from the zones into positions. The absence of zoning and rotation will result in domination by particular sections of the country and exclusion of others in perpetuity.

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  2. Gabitto99
    Gabitto99 November 26, 08:55

    Someone should help me ask el-rufai why Nigeria divided in geographical zones, and if they are not competent presidential aspirants in Avery zone?.

    Reply to this comment
  3. Dr Bunmi
    Dr Bunmi November 26, 10:51

    No!! Rotation is the way to go becos there are competent men and women in every zone, you just have to give them the chance to showcase their competence

    There was a time when rotation was not considered and that was from the time of MM to Abdulsalam and all our heads of state came from the north save OBJ who got in by default and not by choice. That must never be allowed to happen again in Nigeria.

    And why must the cry against rotation always come from the North?

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  4. Me
    Me November 27, 08:49

    So how many southern lecturers have El-Rufai employed to teach at Kaduna State University?

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