Director General of Voice of Nigeria (VON), Osita Okechukwu, has faulted the stance of Igbo Leaders of Thought (ILT) that the Southeast was not keen on clinching the presidency in 2023, saying the group was wrong.
Okechukwu, who is an advocate of Igbo producing the next President of the country, told The Guardian that professors Ben Nwabueze, Chinwite Ejike and Elochukwu Amucheazi were merely guided by academic postulations in their preference for restructuring Nigeria to having an Igbo president in 2023.
He argued that states like Ebonyi, Enugu, Lagos, Ogun, Plateau, Kaduna and others voted against regions in the Sani Abacha and Goodluck Jonathan’s constitutional conferences, insisting that restructuring could only succeed when the weaker states and ethnic nationalities were assured of survival.
Supporting Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, who advised the Igbo to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term to enhance their chances in 2023, Okechukwu said Igbo should rally the President in his target RRAP projects.
“Igbo Leaders of Thought should think well in the collective interest of all by being pragmatic and realistic. We should vote for President Buhari in 2019, so that Igbo could become president in 2023 and continue the infrastructure development he has embarked upon.
To be precise, Buhari’s RRAP projects, including roads, rails, agriculture and power, are targeted at 5,000 kilometers of federal roads, 5,000 kilometers of rail lines, 5,000 additional megawatts and self-sufficiency in food production. RRAP is spreading gradually across the country and we want them in the Southeast,” he stated.On the concerns raised by the ILT, Okechukwu pointed out that President Buhari was seeking solutions to end the killings in parts of the country, assuring that it would not continue.
“I have tremendous respect for Nwabueze, Chinwite, Amucheazi and other members of Igbo Leaders of Thought. However, I know that most Ndigbo are keen on Nigerian President of Igbo extraction come 2023. An Igbo President in 2023 will cushion agitations of marginalisation and restructuring. “Let us be pragmatic, otherwise Nwabueze, who is an eminent constitutional lawyer, should tell us how he intends to navigate the national and states Assemblies to amend the 1999 Constitution to his taste,” he added.