By Demola Akinyemi
Ilorin — Former chairman, Independent Corrupt Practices Commission, ICPC, Justice Mustapha Akanbi (Rtd), has warned the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, not to allow the party’s zoning problem create crisis for the country.
Maintaining that there was no where the issue of zoning was mentioned in the Nigerian constitution, Akanbi insisted: “The 1999 Constitution does not state that the post of president should be zoned.”
Akanbi, who said this on Thursday in Ilorin at the maiden edition of Leadership Platform organised by the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, The Herald Newspaper Chapel in collaboration with Mustapha Akanbi Foundation ,MAF, noted it was only the Peoples Democratic Party’s in-house arrangement which is therefore not binding on all Nigerians.
The retired jurist noted that the PDP has no right to allow their zoning issue supersede the constitution of the country.
He added that President Goodluck Jonathan has the right to contest in the 2011 presidential election, noting that if the former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, and former President, Ibrahim Babangida, could come out, noting should stop him from doing so.
“Any law that run contrary to the constitution of the country is null and void. I would have been happier if Jonathan is not contesting, but in the present circumstance he must contest”, he stressed.
Reacting on Nigeria at 50, he said that he was not happy with the situations in the country; t especially on the level of development and massive corruption going on, adding that Nigeria needed a leader that is true, transparent and committed to the unity of the nation.
Justice Akanbi also said those trying to destroy the country will find out at the end of the day, they are the ultimate losers.
He said, “the only thing I’m happy with is that I have come, seen and done little thing to change the society.”
He mentioned tribalism, extremism; religious violence and massive corruption as one of those things militating against the nations development, while urging Nigerians to play down tribalism in their dealings.
Akanbi enjoined the press to do more to sensitize Nigerians to fight against corruption, saying that until Nigerians decided to rise to fight corruption, the struggle will continue.