The apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has denied endorsing the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu for the 2023 presidential seat in Nigeria.
The group led by Chief Chidi Ibe reiterated its determination to ensure that an Igbo man takes over from President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023 in the interest of equity justice and fairness.
Ohanaeze, in a statement issued by Chika Temple, its National Publicity Secretary, denied endorsing the former Lagos State governor for 2023 presidency, criticizing the media statement by Uche Okwukwu describing Bola Tinubu as a protector of Ndigbo.
It however, wished the APC national leader quick recovery, but urged him to jettison his purported 2023 presidential ambition in order to give room for Igbo Man to emerge.
The Pan-Igbo association’s statement reads: “We wish Ashiwaju of Yoruba land a quick recovery from London health trip, but, Ohanaeze will want to make it clear that we have not endorsed Tinubu or anybody for 2023 presidency, it will not be in the interest of the country to kick out Igbo nation from clinching the presidential seat, because, other regions in this country have taken their turns, natural justice demand that other ethnic nationalities must rally round the people of the southeast extraction to produce Buhari’s successor.
“Again, Ohanaeze doesn’t think that Nigerians will afford again to elect aa sick president as seen in our current President’s earlie medical trips which nearly led this great nation into economic and political instability. So, as we wish him good health, and appreciate his contributions to nation-building, we want to also urge him to continue playing his advisory role, as his name will remain in history, on the quest of all Nigerians to use this current democratic governance towards achieving a greater Nigeria where justice, equity, fairness and peace will guide our daily activities, characters, policies and programs, and as well as our electoral process.
“It must be a mistake for anybody to assume that Bola Tinubu is the protector of the Igbos. Ndigbo will not be in a hurry to recall the eviction notice slammed on Igbos in Lagos by the Oba of Lagos that almost brought disaffection between our brothers and sisters and the host ethnic nationality in Lagos. What were the contributions or efforts of Tinubu then in calling the monarch to order over the unlawful eviction order.
“Ohanaeze reiterates unequivocally that Igbo nation must produce President Muhammadu Buhari’s successor in 2023 to ensure the stability and unification of the country. In as much as the constitution of this country guarantees citizen’s rights to vie for political position of choice, we insist that natural justice demands that Bola Tinubu and his likes should support presidential project of the southeast of Igbo bloc. There is no doubt, very and quite unfair that the Igbo nation had been completely cut off from the sensitive affairs and governance of Nigeria, which is the major factor that sprung up agitations across Igbo land and beyond.
“On the secessionist agitation, Ohanaeze maintains its stand that the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu should be released unconditionally, followed with other pro-Biafra agitators incarcerated in the nation’s security formations across the country. They should be released and granted presidential amnesty, from there, the federal government, Igbo leaders, and the leadership of Kanu-led separatist organization, the IPOB will engage in dialogue to restore the lost peace and unity of Nigeria”