The Arewa Youths Consultative Forum (AYCF) has said the North will not cede power to the South in the coming presidential election in 2023.
The president of the AYCF, Yerima Shettima, stated this on Tuesday in an interview with Vanguard Newspapers.
Mr Shettima said the only option for the North to cede power to the South in 2023 is if someone they trust in the person of Senator Orji Kalu, contests for the position.
He said the region is still interested in holding onto power. The AYCF helmsman also linked the travails of the former Abia State governor, who spent 6 months in prison for stealing public funds while in office as the governor of the state, as a result of betrayals and conspiracies from his own party, the All Progressive Congress (APC).
“How can you think we will cede power to the South in 2023? The North still wants the presidency,” Mr Shettima said.
“The south is in charge of the economy and they have everything, so why would they want to take away the only thing we have. What would you call that?
“Even if we are ceding power to the south in 2023, we should be considering people like Orji Uzor Kalu. He is someone the north trusts and the Northern elders will give him their full support. Most Nigerians don’t know that Kalu’s incarceration emanated from conspiracy and betrayal from his party, the APC,” he added.
When President Muhammadu Buhari completes his second tenure in 2013, he is expected to step down from office. Some persons in the APC are clamouring for power shift to the South but some individuals and groups, like the Arewa Youths, in the North are kicking against it.
The youth group had earlier warned political parties to ensure their next presidential candidates are of Northern extraction or they have themselves to blame after the general election.
Meanwhile, Itse Sagay, the chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) has warned that any attempt to retain power in the North after President Buhari will break up the country.