ZONING AND ITS UNCONSTITUTIONALITY

zoningI believe , as the Nigerian constitution so provides, any Nigerian individual of ‘votable’ age can contest for any electoral position in his constituency, state, or country.

While zoning and rotation seems to be supposedly an idea of justice, fairness and equity in Nigeria, it unfortunately has no provision in the 1999 constitution of Nigeria. As a matter of fact, zoning is not constitutional.

What people say leaves a hint of zoning in the Nigerian constitution is in section 13(3) and (4) of the 1999 constitution. However, the principle mentioned there is ‘federal character’ and is already practised by the federal government in her several parastatals across Nigeria. In order words, the nation practises this stricto sensu.

The ‘federal character’ in its constitutional interpretation is not for our electoral process.If as a country we so dim fit zoning then it should be properly ‘constitionalized’. Else, every Nigerian of votable age should contest and Nigerians should so vote him on the basis of his competence.
.But again, is PDP Nigeria?

Here is how they put it in their constitution Article 7.2(c): ‘In pursuance of the principle of equity, justice and fairness, the party shall adhere to the policy of rotation and zoning of the party and public elective office and shall be enforced by the appropriate executive committee at all levels’

Again that is the PDP constitution, not the Nigerian constitution.

As 2015 approaches let us not employ the sentiments of zoning and vote mediocres in the different political offices.

Good governance will not happen by the sentiments of zoning but by candidates who have true leadership qualities.

PDP in Akwa Ibom may play by that sentiment of zoning, after all, it is entrenched in their constitution. But we must be careful not to allow a selection process, which may obviously take place when the PDP primaries holds in November, to influence our eventual voting decision.

Let the most credible and competent fellow irrespective of his ethnicity lead our dear state Akwa Ibom.

I recently sent a message to a chief proponent of one of the Governorship candidate to give me audience so that i can ask him 20 questions. I even said that if this Governorship candidate can answer them, I will publicly endorse him. But nothing has come out of that request even though the proponent said the meeting was a possibility.

I use this medium to say that any Akwa Ibom state Governorship aspirant, irrespective of ethnic affiliation, who can clearly articulate his policies to me (and us), will get my vote and public endorsement.That will however be based on the premise that the 20 questions(which will also be published with the answers of the candidate) are answered intelligently and with a leadership bias void of any underlining ethnic prejudice and sentiment

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