- The Northern Youth Leaders Forum (NYLF) has taken a stand on the 2019 general elections
- The group insists that the presidency should remain in the north
- They also endorsed former minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Senator Bala Mohammed as their choice for the president
The Northern Youth Leaders Forum (NYLF) has called for the presidency to remain in the North ahead of the 2019 general elections.
Rising from its meeting in Yola, Adamawa state on Saturday, June 17, the group comprising the National Executive Committee of NYLF, the state chairmen and the chairmen and secretaries of the 42 affiliated Northern Organizations, were unequivocal in their demand for a northern presidency come 2019.
Addressing the press after the meeting, the chairman of NYLF, Comrade Elliot Afiyo, stated that the North will not allow the presidency move to the South in 2019.
His words: “We want to reiterate and clearly warn that the North will not and will never allow the presidency to move to the South in 2019.
“In as much as we can tolerate or pay any sacrifice for the unity of this country, we remain committed to the North producing the President in 2019.
“The experiences of 2011 and 2015 still remain afresh in our minds.”
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NAIJ.com gathered that the NYLF had earlier shortlisted and screened potential northern candidates for the 2019 presidency.
Those shortlisted and screened by the group include the Senate President; Bukola Saraki, former Vice President; Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, former Jigawa state governor; Alhaji Sule Lamido, Kaduna state governor; Mallam Nasir El-Rufai, and his Sokoto, Gombe, Zamfara, and Borno counterparts; Aminu Tambuwal, Ibrahim Dankwambo, Abdulaziz Yari and Ibrahim Shettima.
Others were Senators Bala Mohammed, Rabiu Kwankwaso, Ali Modu Sheriff and legal luminary; Alhaji Tanimu Turaki (SAN).
Out of those selected, t the following were thereafter shortlisted and endorsed by the group's NEC during its meeting Kaduna on Wednesday, May 17.
1. Senator Bala Mohammed
2. Alhaji Atiku Abubakar
3. Alhaji Tanimu Turaki (SAN)
4. Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo
Subsequently, the patrons and the leaderships of the 42 affiliated organizations screened and endorsed Senator Bala Mohammed and Alhaji Atku Abubakar.
Thereafter, Senator Bala Mohammed was finally endorsed as the sole candidate for the groups and was accepted by the group's patrons.
“We believe and strongly too, that Senator Bala Mohammed is a detribalized Nigerian who does not attach sentiments of religion and ethnicity in his dealings with any citizen.
“He also has general goodwill and acceptability both nationally and internationally. His credibility is unquestionable and his loyalty and interest of the North within the national interest is surely not in doubt,” the group said.
On the recent quit notice issued to Igbos in the North by some northern youth groups, the NYLF described the action as “ill advised, ill timed and uncalled for.”
“We strongly believe that these groups of northern youths were motivated, encouraged and sponsored by some few individuals who felt cheated by both the federal government and some state governments controlled by the All Progressive Congress (APC).
These individuals were used and dumped. No recognition or appreciation was extended to them. They are therefore bent on destabilizing the country,” the NYLF alleged.
The group however warned Igbo groups to stop “molesting, frustrating and insulting the northerners especially our elders.
“Only bastards will stand aloof or fold their hands and watching fellow youths insulting their parents.
“We have tolerated these hate speeches during the 2015 Presidential Campaigns, we will no longer tolerate it again,” the group warned.
Meanwhile, the chairman of the APC in Abia state, Chief Donatus Nwankpa has advised pro-Biafra agitators to shelve their secession plan and negotiate to produce an Igbo president in the country.
Nwankpa gave the advice in an interview with journalists in the state capital, Umuahia on Sunday, June 18.
The APC chieftain stated that the agitation for a Biafra Republic is not a viable option for the South-east zone of the country.
Watch Acting President Yemi Osinbajo talk about the unity of Nigeria on NAIJ.com TV below: