By Zika Bobby
The All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain in Anambra State, Chief Modestus Umenzekwe said what Nigeria needs right now to make progress is unity.
Umenzekwe said the Igbo in the north can afford to abandon over N44 trillion investment to safeguard their lives and that of their loved ones.
“We are all Nigerians and Nigeria belongs to us all. At this period of our Nation’s life the president and acting president need our maximum support in order to build a Nigeria of our dream,” he said.
What is your reaction to the hree months ultimatum by northern youth coalition to Igbo to leave?
From time, the friendship between the late Dr. Nnamdi Azikwe and the Sokoto Caliphate had been cordial.
The former Emir of Kano, Alhaji Mohammadu Sanusi, the grandfather to the present Emir, through that understanding, had ensured that Igbo were rightly treated. So, our relationship with the north didn’t start today.
One of the earliest hotels in the North, Universal Hotel Sokoto, was owned by late Chief Ogbunugafor from Nimo in Anambra State.
Okonkwo Kano from Umudim Nnewi, Chief Jideofor of Alor and Chief Onyido, the father of the present Igwe of Ogidi and Chief C.D. Jones Okpala of Akpo, a family friend to Alhaji Musa Gashash, the first Northern Nigerian minister of lands and many other individuals brought about the peaceful and cordial coalition between Ndigbo and north especially in Sokoto and Kano until the military took over. This is just to tell you that both Igbo and their northern host have lived well in the past. So for a group to now come out to say leave, is really disheartening.
For a group, who probably do not know the history of this age long relationship, to now feel there should be an expiration date and decided to issue Igbo quit notice is truly disgusting. If you say Igbo should leave, it is a blessing in disguise. Igbo are capable of building their homes to be greater than what they built outside their homes. It is most unfortunate that these happenings are taking place when President Muhammadu Buhari is not in the country.
The childhood relationship between President Buhari and late Owelle Chuma Bamidele Azikwe cannot be overemphasized and that is why it is important for the president to return hale and hearty to Nigeria before Igbo will start relocating from the North.
Igbo have never been hostile to their host. The first International Hotel in Maiduguri was built by an Igbo man, the late Chief Mbonu from Nawfia. All these things notwithstanding, Igbo will leave before the date expires.
Nigerians and the world should note that Igbo have assets totaling over M40 trillion in the North, but that will never stop us from going if push turns to shove.
Would you say Ndigbo have had a fair deal under the Buhari administration?
It is always said by the Igbo that Buhari does not like us and as such doesn’t want us in his government. I don’t agree.
Buhari is one of Nigeria’s leaders that has demonstrated true love for Igbo. In 1984 he made an Igbo man, Chief Chike Ofodile his Attorney General and during that time Buhari has been exposed as an incorruptible leader Nigeria has ever had.
It was during this period that so many changes were made both in the Judiciary and social sectors for the good of the country.
In Buhari’s first attempt in becoming president, an Igbo man in the person of Chief Edwin Ume-Ezeoke, former speaker in the Federal House of Representatives was his running mate.
In his second attempt, the late Chuba Okadigbo, former President of the Senate was his running mate.
To further demonstrate his friendly relationship with the Igbo, Buhari engaged the services of the revered Igbo legal Icon, Chief Mike Ahamba, SAN, as his Principal Counsel before his swearing in as the President in 2015. This definitely does not look like someone who hates Igbo.
Remember that even Acting President Yemi Osinbajo was accused of giving juicy federal appointment to his kinsmen. This is not true because Professor Osinbajo is a pragmatic leader who understands the law of federal character.
How do thing the forthcoming Anambra guber election would go?
The All Progressives Congress (APC) will emerge victorious in the November governorship election. It is sealed already because the people have made up their mind.
Look at the security situation in Anambra State. It had almost collapsed because the act of kidnapping, armed robbery, killing of security operatives by hoodlums and other vices are now on the increase. Everything has collapsed under this government and the people deserve better.