Why Igbo can’t Produce Nigeria’s President – APC
The ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, has given reasons why the Igbo of South-East geo-political zone cannot produce Nigeria’s President in 2023, advising them to play their politics right if they want to govern Nigeria in the foreseeable future, adding that the presidency is not the right of any ethnic group.
National Organising Secretary of APC, Emma Ibediro, said this yesterday in Abuja during an interview with journalists at the party’s national secretariat.
Ibediro, who hails from Imo State, said the Igbo nation must be ready to work within the APC structure or any other viable platform they intend to use to actualise an Igbo presidency, adding that they must also be ready to contribute positively to such a platform.
He described as unjustified, claims by Igbo that they were being marginalised by the President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration, explaining that the people have not brought anything tangible to the table since 2015.
According to him, “in 2015, only 198,000 votes came in from the entire South-East; in 2019, we had a little above 400,000.
“Some people will say that it was an improvement but what type of improvement was that? You can imagine Anambra State, for example, bringing in less than 50,000 votes when our members in that state are over 200,000.It means is that even APC members did not vote for our President.
“Igbo presidency is not a right, just like Hausa or Yoruba presidency is not a right. Igbo presidency can only become possible if you work within the party and convince the rest of Nigerians to produce a Nigerian President of Igbo extraction.
“For instance, in APC, you have to work within the party and with every other member of the party, either from North-West, North-East, North Central or South-West and then, we must come to the conclusion that as an individual, you can have the confidence of Nigerians to become their President.
“The fact that you are from South-East or any other area is neither here nor there. So, if the people from the South-East are aspiring to produce Nigeria’s President, I think the first thing to do is to work within the party and then get the rest of Nigerians to accept them for that position.”
Asked whether the APC should hand over the party’s presidential ticket to the South-East in 2023, the APC official said: “I don’t want to be emphatic that there must be an Igbo President because this party is not built on the platform of dictating to the people what they want.
“If you check the percentage of population of members of APC and check the population of Nigerians, you will see that all members of the party are even less than five percent of the population and we are talking about a President of Nigeria, not a President of APC.
“So, first of all, under whatever platform you want to achieve that aspiration, you have to work to get yourself acceptable to that platform. It is not going to be an automatic award that Nigerians should give South-East ticket for the presidency.
“What happens if APC gives the ticket automatically to somebody from the South-East and he doesn’t win the very election? Have you considered that?”
He accused the Igbo of not playing “good politics” since 2015, saying “the South-East needs to play good politics: the politics of engagement, consultation and getting the other parts of Nigeria involved in their aspirations.
“But for now, I don’t think we are playing good politics. It is a question of give and take. I am an Igbo man and I need to be very objective.
“The President campaigned in all the five states of the South-East, just like he campaigned in every other state. But what was the return in terms of votes?
“You also need to encourage people to do something for you. You cannot, at every point, be asking for something without giving something back.”
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