Chinedu EzeIfedigbo May 22, 2018

A coalition of Arewa youths has called on
President Muhammadu Buhari and former
vice president, Atiku Abubakar not to
contest the 2019 presidential election.
The group said the duo should rather leave
the stage for more competent, younger
persons between the ages of 18-60 years to
contest and steer the affairs of the country.
In a communique issued at the end of a two-
day summit in Kaduna, and read by the
group’s spokesman, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman,
it noted that it is not the first time they
would advise people in their 70s and above,
particularly, President Buhari, to quit the
presidential stage for younger generations.
“We have advised him (Buhari) to look for a
younger person who has the same integrity
like his to run for the presidency.
“Anybody above 70 years of age should give
way to the younger generation.”
The Arewa youths also urged that the
recommendations of the committees set up
by the All Progressives Congress (APC) and
the Northern Governors Forum on
restructuring be “discredited and
abandoned.”
The communiqué said its advice to Buhari
and Abubakar is in recognition of the reality
that Nigerians, within the age bracket of 70
years and above have “participated in
debates which gave birth to the current
national arrangement that is largely
acknowledged as having failed our national
aspirations.”
The communique further said: “This is in
recognition of the reality that Nigerians
within this age bracket are growing worried
that the nation has not fared well by being
on the same political and economic lanes
for 58 years (1960-date), resulting in no
meaningful developmental impact.
This shall, therefore, eventually form the
cornerstone for a platform for Nigeria to
deliberate, decide, design and develop a
roadmap for an ultimate generational power
transition.
“Frustrated young Nigerians, having paid
their dues in the national developmental
effort, have been left to suffer the
suffocating consequences of the prevailing
exclusive and defeatist leadership selection
process being imposed on the country over
the years, by successive ruling elite.
“It is time they formed a rallying point from
which younger Nigerians can make a strong
demand for a new political order, to usher in
a generational power shift, as reparation for
past marginalisation in the nation’s political
leadership.”
It also frowned at, “the mistake about to be
committed by the present crop of northern
political leaders in accepting a proposal that
could mortgage the region’s coIlective
interest and its future.
“The seeming endorsement by some
northern leaders of a brand of restructuring
that clearly places the region at a
disadvantage is unacceptable and must be
discountenanced.
For the avoidance of doubt, the North fully
supports the restructuring of the country and
shall be prepared to represent itself in any
debate on the issue.
“The North shall, however, not settle for any
restructuring plan that falls short of a total,
comprehensive and wholistic reordering that
should, first and foremost, include the
peaceful, democratic and civil determination
of the people or groups of people who truly
and sincerely wish to remain part of the
Nigerian federation.
“Any reorganisation process which fails to
involve the discussion of the limits and
extents of all the federating components,
with regards to available space and
resources, shall not be acceptable to the
North,” the group said.


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