Southern Governors on Monday agreed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s successor should emerge from their region, thereby puncturing the presidential ambition of prominent politicians from the North.
The governors under the aegis of the Southern Governors Forum (SGF) reached this decision after a closed-door meeting in Lagos on Monday.
Governors who attended the meeting are the Chairman of the forum and Governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu; Dapo Abiodun of Ogun, Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State, Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta, Nyesom Wike of Rivers; Seyi Makinde of Oyo; Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti; Douye Diri of Bayelsa, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu and Emmanuel Udom of Akwa Ibom.
While the governors of Anambra and Cross River were absent, those of Edo, Imo, Abia and Ebonyi states were represented by their deputies.
If the decision of the 17 Governors is obeyed, it would end the presidential ambition of prominent politicians in the North ahead of the 2023 presidential election.
The likes of Atiku Abubakar, from Adamawa State, a former Governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso from Kano State; Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State and Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State would be affected.
Others are Governor Bala Mohammed from Bauchi State and a former Governor, Ahmed Sani Yarima from Zamfara State.
However, the decision would give room for a former governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu, Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State, Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State; a former governor, Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, Minister of Transportation and a former Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi and a former governor, Donald Duke of Cross River State.