By G9ija

Leaders in the southern and central regions of the country under the auspices of the Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF) have faulted the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for electing a northern presidential candidate in the 2023 general elections.

They described the outcome of the exercise as “an affront” to the people of the South and asked politicians in the region to reject any nomination for the office of the Vice President.

In a communique jointly signed on Sunday by leaders of the groups that made up the forum, they specifically faulted the emergence of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar as the main opposition party’s flagbearer.

The signatories to the communique include Senator Bassey Ewa-Henshaw (PANDEF/South-South), Ambassador Okey Emuchay (Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide/South East), Jare Ajayi (Afenifere/South West), Dr Isuwa Dogo (Middle Belt Forum), and Ken Robinson who is the acting coordinator of SMBLF.

The SMBLF, however, urged presidential hopefuls in the South to shun the attitude of individualism and self-confidence, and work collectively to achieve the shared objective of producing President Muhammadu Buhari’s successor in the forthcoming elections.