The Northern Elders Forum (NEF) on Friday condemned the zoning of the 2023 presidency, noting that it contradicts the standard norms of democracy.
This was made known by the NEF Convener, Prof. Ango Abdullahi, during a meeting with the Coalition of Northern Groups in Zaria, Kaduna State.
Ango affirmed that political parties should allow their members freely vote for candidates of their choice. He noted that the power-sharing deal between the northern and southern regions of Nigeria was dead and buried.
“Candidates should be allowed to contest elections on the basis of merit and their competence. Merit should be the yardstick to get the country’s next president, the position should be open to standard norms of the democratic process,” he said.
Ango explained that he presided over the selection of the northern presidential consensus aspirants – which involved former Senate President, Bukola Saraki, and Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State – in his personal capacity and “not on behalf of Northern Elders Forum.”