By Ben Agande & Inalegwu Shaibu
ABUJAâ€”SENATE President, Senator David Mark said, yesterday, that President Goodluck Jonathan would not jettison the current zoning arrangement in election into public offices or the federal character principles as enshrined in the constitution.
Senator Mark who gave the assurance while addressing a delegation of Northern Elders Assembly in Abuja said that President Jonathan who came on board a joint ticket with the late President Umaru Yarâ€™Adua was committed to the principle of rule of law.
A statement signed by the Chief Press Secretary to the Senate President, Mr. Paul Mumeh, quoted Senator Mark as saying that President Jonathan was very mindful of the diverse nature of the country and would not do anything unconstitutional to undermine the sanctity of her unity.
Mumeh said the Senate president allayed the fears being expressed in some quarters that President Jonathan might not uphold the principle of federal character or zoning arrangement in appointment or election into public offices.
The statement said: â€œPresident Jonathan who ran a joint ticket with late President Umaru Musa Yarâ€™Adua has also emphasized on the principle of the rule of law as his guide.
We shall do everything within the ambits of the law for the utmost interest of Nigeria and Nigerians. We are all bound by a common purpose and mission as one indivisible country with a common heritage.
â€œAs elders, we must be nationalistic and open minded in our views and actions so that we can correct the younger generation from deviating.â€
Mumeh said that Senator Mark admitted that the introduction of federal character principle in employment and appointment of citizens into public offices was a worthy development adding that, â€œfederal character principle is good but should not be at the expense of merit.â€
Earlier in his remark, leader of the delegation, Alhaji Bello Kirfi had urged Senator Mark to prevail on President Jonathan not to jettison the principle of federal character and zoning in the forthcoming general elections.