A presidential aspirant under the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) SKC Ogbonnia, has argued that the Igbos in Nigeria are actually the problem plaguing the actualisation of a Biafra ideal in the country.
He said this against the backdrop of agitations that the Igbos are being marginalised in the country, which has led to many people demanding for a Biafra Republic from the Nigerian state.
Ogbonnia who spoke during an interview with Ripples Nigeria in Lagos in the series of interactions with presidential aspirants in the build up to the 2019 elections, noted that during the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan, a good number of Igbos were in power, but failed to use the opportunity to develop the south east area.
On how he would resolve the Biafra issue if he were president, he stated that he would dialogue with Biafra agitators like Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) group to understand that they should be questioning those in power who used the resources meant for development of the south east for their personal benefits.
“Biafra is not an issue, if I speak to Nnamdi Kanu for one hour, he will abandon Biafra. But he will turn his energy on those who looted the projects in Igbo land and I know them. We know who was in power before Buhari; do I have to go one by one? The list is long.
“Let’s go back when someone from the East was President; a Biafran was president, do you forget? Jonathan was a Biafran. Bayelsa was in Biafra? Is that debatable? Biafrans have ruled this country in the name of Goodluck Ebele Jonathan; does he deny that?
“So when the Biafrans had power, what did Biafra do with the power? Within the time the Biafrans had power, Okonjo Iweala was minister of finance, the defacto prime minister, Barth Nnaji was minister of power, Deziani Madueke was minister of petroleum, aviation had Stella Oduah, Ike Ikweremadu was deputy Senate President, Ihediora was deputy speaker, Hope Uzodinma was chairman, aviation. Chairman of works, Senate, was Ayogu Eze; Chairman, House Committee on Works, Honourable Ogbuefi Ozombachi; Chairman of works, at the Senate is Biafra; chairman of works, federal House, is Biafran.
“The deputies in the two houses in charge of constituency projects were BIAFRANS. The person who was in charge of amending the constitution was Biafra, and they couldn’t amend the constitution to create the additional states that they were complaining about, and they spent N10 billion in the process.
“So if Nnamdi Kanu hears or sees these evidences and wants to continue to talk, shame on him”.
According to him, the Igbos are deluding themselves if they think the presidency will be given to them on a platter of gold in 2023, as being promised by some politicians to have them support the current administration.
He stated that Igbos, and indeed other Nigerians should jettison the idea of zoning, even as he said he is not seeking the presidency as an Igbo man, but as a qualified Nigerian, who can bring about the needed change in the country.
On his chances of clinching the APC ticket towards the 2019 elections, since the date for collection of forms has expired, the aspirant expressed confidence that he would emerge president of Nigeria come 2019.
He asked Nigerians to rest assured that he has come to rescue the nation, and noted that Buhari has run afoul of the law by accepting the presidential nomination forms which was bought for him by a group.
Ogbonnia also stated that Buhari lacks the charisma to inspire Nigerians, and make them believe in things to come, which he said should be a requisite of good leadership.
He lamented that the administration of President Buhari was merely paying lip service to the fight against corruption, as the present reality suggest that it was protecting some politicians accused of corruption.
He said if he were president, he would not allow himself to be “played by the judiciary the way they are playing Buhari”, as he would establish special courts to speed up cases of corruption against politicians, to ensure that anyone found guilty would face the law, and not let the cases drag on endlessly.
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