Group calls for power shift to the south in 2023

NEWS DIGEST – A coalition of civil societies met at the Stonehedge hotel in Abuja on Thursday to mull ways to improve the balance of power in a plural society as Nigeria.

The group, the coalition of civil society for good governance (CCSGG), said that there was a leadership gap in the country and it was important for political parties to produce candidates with qualities desirable by citizens ahead of the 2023 general elections.

“In conformity with the hitherto order of rotational presidency,” the coalition noted that political decisions should focus on a return of power to southern Nigeria in 2023.

The return of presidency to the south, they said, would create the assurance of a peaceful and credible transition as a fundamental pivot for power balance in Nigeria. The coalition has also called on other regions to give the south the needed regional interface for a more peaceful election.

The coalition urged the Federal Government to improve the inclusiveness of civil societies, faith based organizations, youth and women based organizations on issues that represent peace building in the country.

CCSGG is convinced that such attempts, which include the involvement of relevant stakeholders in politics, will help sustain the ethnic and religious diversity in the country.

CCSGG noted that it is the responsibility of political parties to produce candidates with the right education for office.

“All political parties and stakeholders should present candidates with high standard values for education, security, socioeconomic and political development,” the communique read.

A monolithic economic pattern, dominated by revenue from export of oil, CCSGG said, will “not be sustainable on the long run”. The coalition said it was important for the government to prioritise the diversification of economy ahead of the next phase of presidency.

Ultimately, the coalition called on Nigerians to see beyond their plurality. “A template for transformation from a country of micro ethnic nationalities to a cohesive nation must be engaged through multi-stakeholders’ participation.”