Ngige’s call on Igbo to join APC child­ish, pedes­trian –Ohanaeze

The Punch - - NEWS -

TSuc­cess Nwogu and Raphael Ede

he Ohanaeze Ndigbo on Mon­day de­scribed as child­ish, a call by the Min­is­ter of Labour and Em­ploy­ment, Dr Chris Ngige, that the Igbo should join the All Pro­gres­sives Congress in or­der to pro­duce the next Pres­i­dent of the coun­try.

The group’s Na­tional Pub­lic­ity Sec­re­tary, Prince Uche Achi-ok­paga, in a tele­phone in­ter­view with one of our correspond­ents, said un­til an “Igbo man be­comes pres­i­dent, Nige­ria will never progress.”

Ngige, had while ad­dress­ing the APC mem­bers on Sun­day at Alor in the Ide­mili South Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment Area of Anam­bra State, said the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment led by Pres­i­dent, Ma­jor Gen­eral Muham­madu Buhari (retd.), had done well for the Igbo.

he had stated that the APC was the eas­i­est po­lit­i­cal plat­form the South-east could use to as­cend the pres­i­dency of the coun­try.

Fault­ing Ngige, Achi-ok­paga said the min­is­ter’s state­ment was base­less and pedes­trian. Ac­cord­ing to him, in 2019, the Igbo voted for the APC.

he asked, “Is Ngige from Ghana? Is he not an Igbo man? The APC got all the per­cent­ages of votes they needed from the South-east in the Fe­bru­ary 2019 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion. Was it a fluke or doc­tored? Were the votes not Igbo votes? So if he is say­ing Igbo should join the APC, is he say­ing that there are no Igbo in the APC, in­clud­ing him­self?”

The Ohanaeze spokesman said peo­ple ask­ing the Igbo to join the APC were just look­ing for an ex­cuse not to field an Igbo can­di­date in 2023.

he stated, “I think his state­ment is very pedes­trian. It is just that when you want to kill a dog, you want to find a fault to hang it. Just to find a fault to say that the Igbo are this or that. Let me tell you, un­til an Igbo man be­comes Pres­i­dent noth­ing will move for­ward. Nige­ria will con­tinue to be a mo­tion­less engine.

“We have said the Ig­bo­man sees the en­tire world as his vil­lage. So if an Igbo man be­comes pres­i­dent of Nige­ria, there is no state, there is no vil­lage in Nige­ria that you can­not find an Igbo man. So he has no time to marginalis­e any­one. The Igbo man lives in Sokoto, so the gov­ern­ment will like to build roads in Sokoto be­cause his brother lives there. The Igbo man lives in Kafachan. The Igbo live in Ogun. They live in Cross River. They live in all parts of Nige­ria.

“The whole of Nige­ria is the hori­zon of Igbo man. There’s no eth­nic­ity in Igbo man. It is only the Igbo that prac­tise one Nige­ria, ev­ery other per­son is a hypocrite. So un­til Igbo man be­comes pres­i­dent, Nige­ria will keep run­ning round the same cir­cle. What Ngige said was just child­ish.”

On its part, the Peo­ples Demo­cratic Party said the APC was not a vi­able party for Ndigbo to ac­tu­alise any of their po­lit­i­cal as­pi­ra­tions in.2023.

The PDP Deputy Na­tional Pub­lic­ity, Mr Di­ran Odeyemi, in an in­ter­view with one of our correspond­ents in Abuja on Mon­day, also said the PDP was not dead.

he said the com­ment by Ngige that the Igbo peo­ple should join the APC to re­alise their as­pi­ra­tion for the 2023 pres­i­dency was a mere cam­paign talk which had no prac­ti­cal va­lid­ity.

Odeyemi said, “Ngige can say all that he wants to say. he can ca­jole the peo­ple to join them in the APC. But he knows that the South-east is a no-go area for the APC. There is noth­ing they can say that the peo­ple will be­lieve them.

“In 2023, we are bring­ing out a great can­di­date that Nige­ri­ans will know and vote for. It is too early to be talk­ing about zon­ing, but Ngige knows that the Igbo peo­ple will never go the way of the APC be­cause it is a party that is full of de­ceit and lies.”

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