Nigerians from the Southern part of the country will not support any party that fields a Northern candidate in the 2023 presidential election, state governors from the region have said.

With President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration winding down in 2023, some individuals from the North who consider themselves influential are clamouring for power to remain in their region.

They are of the opinion that merit should be the deciding factor rather than rotational presidency which was the practice when the now opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) held sway from 1999 to 2015.

Under the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) the party has no zoning in its manifesto but some of its chieftains are claiming there was an unwritten agreement to rotate power between the North and South when the party was formed to snatch power from the PDP.

The Southern Governors’ Forum (SGF) which has demanded for power to return to the South says the people of the South-West, South-East and South-South geo-political zones will not support any political party that fields a Northerner as it’s presidential candidate in the next presidential election.

Chairman of the forum, Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State stated this on Friday while being interviewed on Channels Television.

“There are about three political parties that are in the Southern Governors’ Forum, we have APGA, PDP and APC,” Mr Akeredolu explained. “All of us are unanimous in our position that the next president of this country must come from the south.

“For us, we are unanimous. It is not a political platform. I believe that any party that picks somebody from the north would have to face the whole southern region, southern government because they would not support it.

“But it has to come from the south. We are saying that there must be, what I will call rotational. The justice of it, the fairness in it, that is what we are preaching.

“If my president – President Buhari — has been in office for eight years, so it can’t be from the north, the next president must come from the south.

“There are many people that are competent. We have competent people in the north as we have competent people in the south, so the president can come from any part of the country,” the SGF chairman added.