A socio-political youth group, Coalition of South-East Youth Leaders (COSEYL), has described the call for a president of South-East extraction in 2023 as “constitutional”.
This is contained in a release co-signed by the group’s president-general, Goodluck Ibem, and secretary-general, Kanice Igwe, a copy of which was made available to journalists in Owerri on Saturday.
According to the group, zoning the presidency to the South-East will be in concordance with the Federal Character principle as enshrined in Section 14 (3) of the 1999 Constitution as amended.
It, therefore, commended southern governors for unanimously calling for the zoning of the presidency to the South even as it called on stakeholders from the northern part of the country to tow the same path.
“In line with Section 14 (3) of the 1999 Constitution as amended, ‘the composition of the government of the federation or any of its agencies and the conduct of its affairs shall be carried out in such a manner as to reflect the Federal Character of Nigeria and the need to promote national unity, and also to command national loyalty, hereby ensuring that there shall be no predominance of persons from a state or from a few ethnic or other sectional groups in that government or any of its agencies’,” the group stressed.
COSEYL further described the federal character principle as “one of the features of the Nigerian federation which has been introduced into the Nigerian corpus juris.”
It added that there are many Southeasterners who are qualified to steer the nation’s ship and called on Nigerians to embrace the rule of law by clinging to the stipulations of the Constitution in the interest of peace and national cohesion.
“The Constitution is the framework upon which the country is administered and it will be against the spirit of unity and nationhood to deny the Southeast support to occupy the office of the president come 2023.
“The Southeast is the only zone that has not occupied the coveted position and it will be in keeping with the principle of equity and fair play to zone the office to the zone,” COSEYL added.