By G9ija

The Emir of Dutse, Alhaji Nuhu Mohammadu Sanusi, has said Transportation Minister Rotimi Amaechi is the best man to become the next President.

The Emir said his convictions were predicated on Amaechi’s performances as a former governor of Rivers State and as a minister.

Emir Sanusi spoke at his palace yesterday in Dutse, the Jigawa State capital, when he hosted Amaechi as part of the minister’s consultations in the North.

He said: “In Nigeria, we are always carried away by tribal, political and other issues. But there’s a Nigerian that I know, and Amaechi is a true Nigerian who is detribalised.

“He provided a place for Muslims to worship in Rivers State, which I understand is being destroyed after he left. He endured all the humiliations targeted at making the Muslims feel unwanted in Port Harcourt. I also know that God will reward him.

“In this country, we are faced with distress. Part of it is by our own making, not the government. What are these issues? They are: job opportunities, fighting corruption, infrastructural development and social vices, such as armed robbery, banditry and so on.

“These are the problems that are facing our country today. My knowledge and understanding of this gentleman, Chief Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation, is that he has what it takes to fight insurgency. He did mention one: when he was governor, there was criminality and other vices and he was able to control it.

“I am sure he would do this better now, if he becomes the President. With all the resources available, he would use them to fight insurgency and other vices that are affecting us, particularly here in the North.”

Also, Kogi State governor and presidential aspirant on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Yahàya Bello, has given reasons for his opposition to rotational presidency principle.

He said ahead of the 2023 general election, Nigeria needs competent leaders, irrespective of where they come from.

Bello, who spoke through his Commissioner for Information and the leader of the Directorate of Media, Governor Yahaya Bello Campaign Organisation, Evangelist Kingsley Fanwo, at a media briefing yesterday in Abuja, maintained that rotation and zoning principles have affected the progress of the country.

He said: “That idiosyncratic page must be torn before you can be talking of progressing as a nation, as a people. So, it’s no more about rotation.

“I’m going to quote him now. I was born in the Northcentral. I was born an Ebira man. I did not choose to be an Ebira, I did not choose to be a northerner. That should not determine the criteria for hiring leaders.

“We always bring these (rotation and zoning) to politics. We don’t use it in other places. When you are sick and we are taken to hospitals, they will say you need an operation. You will not ask the Administrative Secretary that the person who is going to treat you should be an Hausa man. You would want a competent medical doctor to attend to you.

“Whether he’s an Ebira, whether he’s an Hausa, it doesn’t matter. What matters is: is he competent to attend to you? Now, the driver that will take you from here to Onitsha, what you are interested in is: is he a good driver? In politics, we use the sentiment: where is he or she coming from?”

For Nigeria to have the real change it needs for an effective turnaround, Bello said the principle of zoning and rotation should be replaced with “competence, capacity, patriotism, a unifier, a bridge builder”.

He added: “That is where we are zoning it to. Whether the person is a northerner, southerner, Igbo, or Hausa, it does not matter anymore.”

Also, a presidential aspirant on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Nwachukwu Anakwenze, has urged the party to zone its presidential ticket to the Southeast.

Anakwenze spoke after he submitted his expression of interest and nomination forms at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja.

He said that the Southeast is the only zone that has not produced a President since the return to civil rule in 1999.

According to him, the Southwest was compensated for the death of Bashorun M.K.O. Abiola, the winner of the 1993 presidential election, and the Southeast supported the quest.

“It is time for everybody to support the Southeast. The Southwest has had its own turn; the Southsouth has had its own turn too.

“So, for equity and fairness, the party’s ticket and presidency should be zoned to the Southeast,” he said.