Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal, has stated that he was not against the Peoples Democratic Party zoning the presidency to the South-South, adding that the opposition party should rather be more concerned with winning the forthcoming general elections.
Tambuwal, who made this known in Minna on Wednesday, when he visited General Abdulsalami Abubakar (retd.), as part of his wide consultation for his presidential ambition stated that he supported a South-South President in the past and has no problem with the emergence of another one.
He stated, “This is far from the truth; someone decided to attribute that to me out of mischief. I never said the South-South cannot produce the party’s presidential candidate.
“I have supported a president of South-South extraction in 2011 and he won the election, so how can I who have supported someone from the South-South say that South-South cannot produce the president of Nigeria.”
The governor stated that zoning was not the issue as political parties in the past had fielded candidates from different zones at different times, adding that the zoning arrangement was not meant to erode the constitutional rights of citizens.
“Go back to the history of democracy in Nigeria: In 1979, NPN had Shagari, NPP had Azikiwe, UPN had Chief Awolowo, GNPP had Waziri Ibrahim, and PRP had Aminu Kano. There was no zoning. When you look at 1992/1993, SDP had Abiola, NRC had Bashir Tofa, there was no zoning.
“In 1998, APP and AD worked out a ticket that saw the emergence of Olu Falae and Shinkafi in 1999. It was a deliberate act by the political class of this country to assuage the South-West as a result of June 12.
“This is to show to you that when you go back to our history, it will show to you that zoning has not been the main issue, the main issue is that political parties throw up candidates and Nigerians decide on who to elect as their president,” the presidential hopeful argued.
He further stated that the PDP was yet to decide on the zoning of the presidency, adding that the party should be more concerned about winning the forthcoming general elections.
“Our party is yet to decide, it has never been the main issue for the PDP. I recommend we should be working on how to win the elections,” he stressed.
Tambuwal also added that his meetings with Governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed, and former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, was aimed at reaching a consensus, noting that there is a need to have a consensus and work together as a team with the sole aim of putting Nigeria first before their ambitions.