The Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) on Tuesday said the North would prefer someone from South-South to emerge as President in 2023, noting that it is a “more friendly space for the North”.
The group said if power must shift to the South, the North would be more comfortable with the South-South, Vanguard reports.
The spokesperson for the northern coalition, Suleiman Abdul-Azeez, said although the defection of former President Goodluck Jonathan had not been confirmed, “I think, all the same, it is said that you never see smoke without fire.”
CNG, however, said it would be difficult for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to convince the voters in the North to accept Jonathan after they had called him all sorts of names in 2014.
Abdul-Azeez noted that there was the concern that Jonathan might return office as President with a grudge against the North and might not be as fair as he could be.
He said, “If it does happen eventually, it could be the saving grace. The reality is that the APC may lack the moral correctness to retain power in the North beyond these first eight years of Buhari.
“And if power must shift to the South, the North would be more comfortable with the South-South. It is a more friendly space for the North.
“Jonathan is by far the most qualified from the South-South among all those that have indicated interest. The problem would be the burden the APC would have to carry having so severely decampaigned Jonathan just less than eight years ago.
“Unless they first apologize to him and to Nigerians generally and admit they judged his administration against the standards of fair judgment, they would only end up embarrassing themselves in the marketplace.
“Besides it would be really difficult for APC to be able to convince the Northern voter to accept Jonathan after they have bloodied him in 2014. And there is the concern that he may return with a grudge against the North and may not be as fair as would be expected.
“But taking away all unhealthy possibilities, Jonathan could provide a soothing relief to these current regional tensions being stocked by separatist forces.”