Ahead of the 2023 general elections, former Governor of Zamfara state, Sen. Sani Yerima has declared his ambition to vie for the presidency, dismissing claims of any zoning arrangement within his ruling All Progressives Congress APC.
At a media interface yesterday in Abuja, Yerima said he had on three occasions since 2006 buried his presidential ambition to support President Muhammadu Buhari and that as the president serves out his tenure in 2023, it is only fitting that he (Yerima) takes a shot at the highest office in the land.
He said; “You may recall that in 2006, I declared my interest to contest for Presidency after having served Zamfara State for a period of eight years.
“However, I decided to withdraw for the current President at that time and since then I went to Senate for three terms. Now that Mr President is completing his second term, I decided to try again to see what God will have for me having voluntarily decided not to go to the Senate again.
“Every politician who is participating in the current democracy knows that the Constitution of Nigeria has spelt out what he has to do as President, Governor, member of National Assembly or State Assembly. Some people try to say that this Constitution is not a Nigerian Constitution but I believe that however, in whatever manner this Constitution came about whether by military dictatorship or arrangement or by constitutional conferences, we now have a Constitution that we operate as a democratic country since 1999.
No zoning in APC
“You see, I don’t think there is anything like agreement. You can ask Mr President, he led the group, Asiwaju was there, I was part of it, there was no meeting I didn’t attend or any meeting that I attended that there is such agreement. Agreement can’t be verbal, it has to be written.
“In any case, any agreement that is contrary to laws of this country is not an agreement. The Constitution is very clear, the Constitution of the political parties, the Electoral Act. We are in a democracy and democracy is governed by processes and procedures and bye laws. So the Constitution of Nigeria doesn’t recognize anything called zoning and likewise check the APC Constitution.
“If there is that agreement why didn’t we put it in the Constitution? So nobody will just come and say that there is an agreement, take your Constitution and amend it, put that agreement if there is then nobody will come from another side and work against the Constitution. As a democrat, as a citizen of Nigeria, I can aspire based on the laws of Nigeria. The Nigerian Constitution has given rights and privileges to every citizen who believes he has something to offer to aspire for any office, irrespective of his state of origin, his tribe, ethnicity, religion; you have right, the Constitution has given us guarantee to participate in the political process.
“Can I give you example of America? George Bush (Snr) was President, George Bush (Jnr) became President. They are from the same family not from the same state, not from the same zone. This is democracy, if Nigerians decides to vote for Yerima, so it be”, he declared.
Vanguard News Nigeria