Dr. Abdujelil Tafawa Balewa, Son of the First Republic Prime Minister of Nigeria, Alhaji Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, has flayed the agitation that power should shift to the Northern region, saying President Jonathan has done a lot for Nigeria within his two-year tenancy at the Aso Villa to earn his vote and that of his fellow Northerners in 2015.
Speaking to newsmen in Lagos on Wednesday, Dr. Abdujelil said the agitation by Professor Ango Abdullahi- led Northern Elders Forum (NEF) and the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) remains personal opinions as they do not reflect the views of the generality of the north.
“Constitutionally, President Goodluck Jonathan has every right as a Nigerian citizen to run for a second term. You can count on me, I will vote for him. There has never been and even before independence, until now, a president that has done so well and seen within our society that women who constitute about half of the population are now being moved up in our ministries and several embassies all over the world.
He noted that democracy is all about conviction and education, saying: “Democracy is about education. If you are able to convince the citizenry of what it is that you are offering. If they agree with you, they would vote for you. If they see what it is that you are doing and it is the right thing for their children and for the future generation, they will vote for you.”
Dr. Abdujelil, observed that the beauty of democracy is that it offers an unfettered freedom of speech to the citizenry.
He described the North as civilized and educated on the trends in the country and world over.
“In a democracy, everyone has a right to express himself. It is incumbent on whoever wants to speak for a political party, a regional party to say what it is that they want. So, I see nothing wrong with that.
“Northerners are more politically savvy than you may think. You can imagine cattle herders coming from Maiduguri or Kano coming to the South, they will have their radios plastered to their ears, listening to BBC. They know what is going on around the world and are more current than you think and unlike here in the South where people are so immersed in different other things, commerce and so on, the northern citizen is very politically savvy and they need to be convinced of what your intentions are,” Balewa added.