ONITSHA, Anambra, Nigeria – Ohaneze Ndigbo has stated that it is working in unity with the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra IPOB to achieve the collective agenda of the Igbo in Nigeria, which is to produce the next president of the country.
This was disclosed by the chairman of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Anambra state chapter, Damian Okeke-Okeke at press briefing in Awka Anambra state capital on Tuesday. According to him, Ohaneze and IPOB have resolved whatever difference between them and are presently working as father and son to achieve the collective good of the Igbo.
He said the Ohaneze Ndigbo led by Nnia Nwodo was seriously working to make sure that Igbo produce the next president of Nigeria and that is that is Igboman priority .
He said that IPOB is agitating for independent of Biafra because of failure of Nigeria to recognize them, while the Ohaneze is agitating for the president of Nigeria because every other tribes in the country had ruled Nigeria apart from the Igbo man. Okeke-Okeke said even when Ohaneze is asking for presidency of Nigeria and the IPOB is agitating for sovereign state of Biafra, they were acting for same purpose of fair share for the Igbo in Nigeria .
According to him, if the Igboman becomes president in 2023 the agitation for sovereign Biafra might fizzle out. He also said that the leaderships of Ohaneze under Nnia Nwodo was given mandate to negotiate the Igbo interest and not seek for sovereign state ,saying that that the youths were asking for sovereign state of Biafra because they have found out the Nigeria state is not giving them what is due for them.
“Ohaneze under the leadership of Nnia Nwodo is given mandate to negotiate igbo position in Nigeria and not to negotiate for sovereign state of Biafra. If the others tribes will allow the Igboman to become the president ,the agitation will die down we are asking Nigerians to give us what rightly belong to us. Other tribes have led this country and it is only the Igbo tribe that has not been given the opportunity. The IPOB is agitating for sovereign state because they found out that Nigerians are not giving us what belong to us and that is why they are agitating .
They believe that if Nigerians are not answering their fathers, they will prefer being themselves ‘he said.
Okeke-Okeke also lambasted some of the traditional rulers in Anambra state who are objecting to zoning of governorship slot in the state. He said that those traditional rulers are objecting to zoning because of money and not for Anambra interest According to him, the zoning arrangement was agreed upon by all the traditional rulers and Anambra elders and was not an All Progressive Grand Alliance APGA affairs.
The meeting where it was agreed was presided over by Mr.Emeka Ayoku in the presence of the former governor of the state Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife among other prominent sons and daughters from the state.
According to him, the purpose of zoning was to reduce tension during an electioneering period and also to cut cost of elections. He also expressed worries over the misunderstanding between few traditional rulers and state government in the recent time.
” We want our revered royal fathers to emulate the conduct of the chairman , Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council and Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe, the grand patron of council and traditional ruler of Nnewi, Igwe Kenneth Orizu as well as the traditional ruler of Mbaukwu, Igwe Peter Anugwu, among others and avoid confrontational stance against the state government as there is need to avoid sending wrong signal to the outside world. It is necessary to follow laid down process and procedures in channeling grievance to appropriate authority” he said.
Okeke-Okeke equally, urged stakeholders in the state to avoid overheating the polity and thereby creating opportunity for few individuals to hijack the power structure and hold the entire people hostages and in bondage.