- Ohanaeze Ndigbo has said Igbos would participate in the forthcoming elections in a bid to change their position in the country
- The group also said its endorsement of Atiku, the PDP's presidential candidate, is the best for Nigeria
- Ohanaeze tagged those against the endorsement enemies of Nigeria and political opportunities
An Igbo socio-cultural group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has said 2019 general elections would be engaged like a war to change the status of Igbos in Nigeria.
The organisation said it endorsed the presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, and his running mate, Peter Obi, in the best interest of the country, saying the present administration of President Muhammadu Buhari will not develop Nigeria’s economy, The Guardian reports.
The president-general of the socio-cultural group, Chief Nnia Nwodo, also said that those against the endorsement the group gave PDP presidential candidate are “political jobbers or have lost touch with realities”, stating that Atiku-Peter Obi candidacy is the best for the Igbos.
He said: “To prevaricate on matters of principle is to sacrifice the principle itself. There is nothing in diplomacy called Sidon look. Our interests are at stake. Ndigbo must stand up and be counted where their interests lie. If you are worried about the consequences of doing so, we are already down and he that is down needs no fear or fall.
“We are not known to be afraid to stand up for our conviction. I find no risk whatsoever in saying this is where our interest is and this is who represents our interests.
“We cannot miss both sides. The people ruling said they don’t want us and the other people are saying your interests are our motto and you want me to fold my hands. No, I am asking my people to stand up for their interests."
Nwodo said the next elections is a means to reduce youth unemployment and also a tool that should be used to give equal control of the country's resources.
He added: “The 2019 election is like a war without weapons. It is a war to change our status in Nigeria. It is a war to change our economic stamina as a country. It is a war to banish unemployment and destitution among our youths. It is a war to be recognised as equal partners in the Nigeria project. It is a war to have sovereignty of our natural resources.”
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The youth section of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo group, through Chief Osmond Nkeoma who is its publicity secretary, however, faulted the endorsement of the PDP presidential candidate.
He said: "Igbo youths were not consulted before taking that position. We will not only mobilise for the upcoming election, but we will encourage President Buhari to do more for Ndigbo.”
Meanwhile, Legit.ng previously reported that Ohaneze Ndigbo formally endorsed the presidential candidate of the PDP, Atiku.
The organisation said that its decision to back the Atiku/Obi candidacy was based on its appraisal of the fault lines in the nation's polity and an evaluation of the manifestos of all the candidates vying for presidency.
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