Magnus Eze, Enugu
A coalition of civil society activists and human rights in the South East, yesterday, said in the interest of peace, equity and good conscience, the Igbo should be allowed to become president of Nigeria in 2023.
The group said they cannot keep quiet and watch the continued relegation and marginalisation of Igbo given their sacrifices to secure the independence of the country, and contribution to its development.
Addressing a press conference in Enugu, with the topic: “Provocative exclusion and orchestrated reduction of Ndi Igbo to second class citizens in Nigeria: A call to the world powers to mount constructive pressure on President Muhammadu Buhari to re-write the wrongs meted out against the Igbo ethnic nationality,” the rights group regretted that everything was skewed against the Igbo.
Spokesman of the group, Ibuchukwu Ezike said aside the exclusion of the Igbo by President Buhari’s administration in appointment of security chiefs, the region had also suffered deficit in critical infrastructure, as well as unfavourable allocation of resources from the Federal Government.
They also condemned the classification of the non violent Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as a terrorist group instead of the killer-Fulani herdsmen and some Boko Haram insurgents, where some members have been granted amnesty and absorbed into the military. The CSOs, therefore, called for the unbanning of IPOB.
They also protested the delay in the passage of South East Development Commission Bill, and concentration of development in the north.
The second Niger bridge has remained a bait to woo Ndi Igbo at every election year, and our people are known as the largest importers in the country, yet efforts to dredge the Onitsha seaport and construct the inland port at Abia State has remained on paper. Total dependence on Lagos ports is no longer tenable,” Ezike said.
The group also advocated the creation of additional state in the South East.
The activists further focussed on the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, the only of such in the region.