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Indigenes throw weight behind Jonathan re-election

13 January 2014, 08:35Augustine Osayande

Abuja - The influential Indigenes and Stakeholders of Middle Belt geo-political region said it would vote for President Goodluck Jonathan if he decided to run for re-election next year.

A prominent leader of the area and former Information Minister, Prof. Jerry Gana, made the position in Jos where he said the region was only waiting for Jonathan to declare his intension to run for office.

“We would not go ahead of him. We would wait for him to declare. And once he declares we would mobilise again and give him all the necessary supports he needs to win again in 2015. We are ready, but we are not promoters; we are strong supporters. Once he declares, the leaders of the Meddle Belt would meet and we would let our people know. The issues are very clear, and I know they would do it again,” he said.

Gana, who was one of the speakers at a Minority Interest Project workshop which the Stefanus Foundation held to sensitize minority tribes in the Northern Nigeria, also supported Jonathan’s decision not to declare if he would contest the election.

“Democracy is not just about election. When you elect a government, you should have period to allow the government to perform; to do the work; to deliver the dividend of democracy to the electorate. We advised him, and it is very correct, that he should not bother himself now with announcing it. If he does it will look like democracy is all about election; it is about development, excellent service, good government, and good economy,” he said.

He downplayed the emergence of the All Progressive Congress (APC).

“We are not afraid at all. In fact, it is good for our democracy. It is a healthy development in Nigeria. In the past, the PDP was the only party that virtually dominated the political space. With the emergence of the APC, we now have two major political parties, which is a good development. But it is not a threat at all to us in PDP.”

Addressing delegates from all the states of the middle belt, who had converged on Jos for the three-day workshop, the former minister identified lack of unity as the major problem confronting the various ethnic nationalities in the region, charging them to work hard to get united.

“There is mystery in solidarity and togetherness. That is why we must come together to harmonize our ideologies and have a consensus on what to take to the ongoing National Conference; let us know what we would go with. Yes, we still love Nigeria; yes, we want to be regarded as Nigerians; but we must be given our right and freedom as citizens of Nigeria. We must never give up; we must remain resolute and focused, and sustain the audacity of hope in the face of intensity of pressure,” said Gana.

– CAJ News


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