Tony John, Port Harcourt
The South-East G-23 group has urged the Igbo to support the re-election of President Muhammandu Buhari in 2019 and avoid making same mistake they made in 2015.
The group believed that the 2015 mistake has cost the Igbo negatively politically.
Convener of South-East G-23, Johnbosco Onunkwo, spoke to journalists, on Saturday, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, stressed that the forthcoming general elections would provide the opportunity for the South easterners to correct their past mistake for the 2023 presidency.
According to Onunkwo, President Buhari has acted like a statesman by carrying the South-East along in terms of appointments and projects, and, therefore, should be supported for re-election in 2019.
Onunkwo’s words, “As 2019 draws near, it is important for us in the South-East to seek the most favourable set of political outcomes from what is realistically obtainable. Do we seek the presidency as a region or do we lend our support to the incumbent?
“Again, do we support another candidate, perhaps from the North where the incumbent hails from? Does the South-East have what it takes to field a presidential candidate?
“If yes, is this the best time to field one, giving the fact that President Buhari, a Northerner, is just completing a single term and has indicated his interest in completing the eight-year-tenure of two terms, as stipulated in the 1999 Constitution?
“While we agree that we have a number of Igbo citizens fit to be president, we must state that for now, it is imperative to allow the incumbent complete his tenure, thus allowing for power to rotate to the South at the end of his tenure as the conventional wisdom of our politics dictate, at that point in time, we can then aim for the presidency with more than enough justification on why power must shift to the South-East region.
“Also, the question of voting another Northerner is out of the equation, as that would mean that power would possibly reside in the North for another eight years, making it a total of 12 years to the detriment of the South-East region that is yet to have a stint at that office since independence”, he emphasised.
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Onunkwo also urged other socio-political groups in the South-East to emulate his group and support the re-election of President Buhari, while appealing to such groups to consolidate their structures to that of Transportation Minister, Chibuike Amaechi, who is the leader of the Buhari Campaign Organisation.
He noted, “It is on this note that we hereby endorse the reelection of President Muhammadu Buhari come 2019, pledging to work for his reelection in the South-East region.
“It is, indeed, both the reasonable as well as the politically correct thing to do. Not only are we endorsing President Buhari for a second term, we are also calling on worthy Igbo leaders to do same as it is the most expedient thing to do at this point in time.
“South-East G-23 is also pledging our loyalty to the leadership of Chibuike Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation and Director General, Buhari Campaign Organisation.
“We are also loyal to our leaders such as Sen. Ken Nnamani, Dr. Chris Ngige, Dr. Ognonnaya Onu and a host of others. We assure them that we will join hands with such a leadership to deliver President Buhari in the South-East,” Onunkwo assured.