By Daniel Eteghe
Governor Mahmud Shinkafi of Zamfara State said, weekend, that anybody should be free to contest the 2011 presidential election, irrespective of the zoning formula of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
The governor, who spoke in an interview at the Presidential Wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, said zoning was a formula contrived by the PDP to capture power between 1999 and 2007, adding that it was no longer desirable.
â€œZoning is only about PDP arrangement and many people have said that it should not be a problem.Â Everybody is free to contest and that is party democracy.
â€œProfessionally, there shouldnâ€™t be zoning, but party arrangement to do some arithmetic to capture the centre; it is what PDP had been doing, but it is no longer useful,â€ Governor Shinkafi said.
According to him, zoning does not only preclude good candidates from contesting elections, but also promote mediocrity.
Shinkafi, who was in Abeokuta to receive a title bestowed on him by the Olowu of Owu Kingdom, said the PDP adopted zoning when it was good for the country to do so, stressing that the circumstances that threw up zoning in 1999 no longer subsist.
The governor described the title given to him by the Olowu of Owu as one of the concrete steps to build bridges across the country.
He said the title would help cement further the relationship between Zamfara State and Owu Kingdom in Ogun State.