2011: North still to produce president-PDP

VANGUARD Newspaper-Ben Agande

CLEAR indications that the leadership and governors elected under the umbrella of the Peoples' Democratic Party, PDP, have given up on the Yar'Adua Presidency, emerged yesterday as the leadership of the party announced that the North would produce the next president of the country in 2011.

National Chairman of the PDP, Prince Vincent Ogbulafor who addressed correspondents after a meeting of the governors of PDP controlled states with members of the National Working Committee of the party in Abuja said since the Southern part of the country produced a president that served for eight years, it was only proper that the North should also produce a president for eight years.

He said: "One of the issues we discussed with the governors has to do with the zoning of the presidency. I think the South had the president for eight years and it is proper to allow the North to have the president for eight years. It was a consensus decision with the governors."

Ogbulafor who said neither him nor the acting president had seen Yar'Adua, seven days after he returned from Saudi Arabia, insisted that there was nothing unusual about it, adding that they were giving the ailing president enough time to recuperate.

The encounter between the PDP chairman and journalists went thus:

What did you discuss at the meeting?

We discussed national affairs and issues that have to do with our states.

Did you discuss Yar'Adua?

Yar'Adua is in the country. He is in the Villa.

Have you been able to see him?

He just came back about a week ago. And I don't have to be in a hurry to see Mr President. The Acting President is doing extremely well. He is not an ambitious man and he realizes that the President just came back and he is giving him to recuperate and he will see him at the appropriate time.

What are some of the issues you discussed at the meeting?

One of the issues we discussed has to do with the zoning of the presidency. I think the South had the presidency for eight years and it is proper to allow the North to have the presidency for eight years.

Was that a consensus?

Yes it was.

Have you given up on Yar'Adua presidency?

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He is still the president and Goodluck Jonathan is still the acting president.

So why the issue of zoning now?


Yesterday's meeting was preceded by a meeting of governors elected on the platform of the Peoples' Democratic Party after which the governors of the 36 states of the federation met for two hours before the PDP controlled states governors met with members of the National Working Committee of PDP.

Though details of the governors meeting were not revealed, Vanguard gathered that the issue of the Yar'Adua presidency as well as the inability of the Acting president to see the president one week after coming back to Nigeria dominated the meeting.

The governors were expected to meet with the Acting president yesterday night.


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