From Geoffrey Anyanwu and Jude Chinedu, Enugu
Ohanaeze Ndigbo has ruled out the possibility of the South East accepting a vice presidential slot even as it reiterated its stance on a president from the zone in 2023.
Its President General, Prof. George Obiozor, at the Imeobi of Ohanaeze meeting in Enugu, yesterday, said the body has made contacts with several Nigerian leaders with respect to the right of the South East to produce President Muhamamdu Buhari’s successor.
He also reiterated the group’s earlier call for a political solution for the release of leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu and other Igbo youths in detention stressing that the body sought justice and equity for all.
He said the double dealings about zoning and rotation of power was an orchestrated conspiracy to deprive the South East of the right to produce a president but assured that the conspiracy would fail.
Obiozor said the clamour for an Igbo to be elected as president was morally and historically justifiable and it was a project that every Igbo must be committed to its actualisation.
“Ours is a right and just cause. I wish to use this opportunity to encourage all the presidential aspirants from the South East to remain focused, tenacious and optimistic. In fact, we are fully committed to the resolution by the Southern and Middle Belt Leadership Forum (SMBLF) that no Southerner, in fact a South Easterner for that matter, should denigrate himself or herself with the position of a vice president.
“Again, I am confident that we will as a people survive and overcome the current challenges that confront us.
“I once again appeal to Mr. President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to find a way towards a political solution to the release of our son, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and other Igbo youths in detention. We seek healing, national unity, progress on a platform of justice, equity, fairness and a sense of belonging in Nigeria.”
Obiozor said the Political Action Committee (PAC) of Ohanaeze would still meet with several eminent Nigerians to persuade them to appreciate the need for a South Easterner to be elected president next year.
He charged Igbo wherever they reside in Nigeria to make haste to acquire their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs).
On insecurity in the South East, he said: “The advent of insecurity in the South East is both bizarre and dramatic…
“The Monday sit-at-home is a slur on the Igbo. It is strange for a group to face the barrel of the gun inwards. Many people have estimated the huge loss the South East incurs on a weekly basis as a result of the sit-at-home Order.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo has tried severally to persuade our youths to realise the consequences of their actions.”
Leaders at the meeting included Chief Mbazuluike Amaechi, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, Chief Nnia Nwodo, Senator Chris Anyanwu, Chief Enwo Igariwey, Senator Victor Umeh, Prof. Peter Umeadi and Prof. Fred Eze.