The candidate said the principle was undemocratic, unethical and antithetical to national progress and development.
The Rivers APGA Governorship Candidate, Ugo Beke, says the principle of Federal Character had not helped Nigeria reach the dream of its founding fathers.
Mr Beke, who spoke to journalists in Lagos, was reacting to the issue of zoning in Rivers and why another Ikwere man should be part of the succession following Rotimi Amaechi and Nyesom Wike.
The governorship candidate, who said he never believed in zoning and the federal character principle, said the principle should not be encouraged in the interest of national unity, economic growth and development.
“The principle has further divided Nigeria. The federal character principle, zoning is undemocratic,” he said.
“It cannot give the best result that can take the country to a greater height globally. It further divides Nigeria.”
The Nigerian government introduced the federal character principle to ensure equitable representation and prevent the dominance of persons from a few states, religions or a particular ethnic group in the governance of the country and the public sector sphere.
However, the candidate said the principle was undemocratic, unethical and antithetical to national progress and development.
According to him, the principle must deliver the best outcome to guarantee the country’s desired growth and development.
Mr Beke, an indigene of Ikwerre that produced the state’s last two governors in Rivers, said the nation’s founders were concerned about the development of the country rather than zoning or the principle of federal character.
“The federal character system has destroyed Nigeria. We should not encourage zoning if the federal character has not worked.
“When we did not consider federal character and zoning, Nigerians were happier and talked less about tribalism and ethnicity.”
On his agenda, Mr Beke said if he wins the 2023 general elections, his efforts would be concentrated on the economy, human capital development and security.
Speaking on the new Election Act, the candidate expressed confidence that the 2023 elections process would be credible and transparent, unlike the previous election held in the country because of some of the technologies already introduced by the electoral umpire.
According to him, all the issues with ballot box snatching on election day will no longer be relevant.
The candidate promised to establish a security trust fund to address diverse security challenges in the state while also promising to build an entirely new city that would rival Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.
He alleged that previous and current governments in the state had not served the people’s interest.