A chieftain of the governing All Progressives Congress (APC) in Niger State, Jonathan Vatsa has backed the demand by the people of the South-East region to produce the next president of Nigeria in 2023.
Vatsa said that an Igbo president was not a privilege but a right, adding that “If Nigerians have conscience” that “equity and justice demand that they should allow the Igbo to produce the next president in 2023.”
Vatsa, a former Niger State commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, stated this on Friday, when he addressed newsmen in Minna, Niger State capital.
He said, “I am convinced that the Igbo have made their consultations from the North, South and the majority of them are in support of a Nigerian President of Igbo extraction.”
He condemned the acts of some politicians from the North, who had argued that the rotational presidency between the North and South be done away with.
Adding that the people of South-East were highly detribalised and could be found in the remotest villages in Nigeria, living peacefully and doing their businesses and paying taxes, Vatsa condemned the Arewa agitation for power to remain in the north.
He said, “A lot of Arewa officials have been speaking that power should remain in the North as if it is their birthright; Nigeria belongs to all of us, and it is bigger than what we think it is. In the spirit of fairness, if we really want to be together, the Igbo should be given a chance in 2023.
“Apart from the time of Dr Nnamdi Azikwe and General Aguiyi Ironsi, we have never had Igbo President; so the Igbo should rise up and take what is due to them. The northerners are ready to support them and I am calling on the Igbo to speak with one voice if they must win in 2023. They must come together and forget their differences.”
Meanwhile, he said the Igbo should be careful to note politicians among them, who would collect money either from the North or South-West to sell their conscience.
He concluded that Igbos should not be treated as second citizens in Nigeria.
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