Editor's note: The agitation for the southeast presidency has put both the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in a tight corner ahead of the 2023 general elections.
In this piece, Deyemi Saka, a social commentator, explains why the former Senate president and ex-Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Anyim Pius Anyim should be supported to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari in 2023.
In the country called Nigeria that has witnessed four republics, there have been a lot of changes in the way the affairs of the state are run which starts from the federal level down to the lowest tier of government and that has given rise to the change in power from one political leader to the other.
These changes have also been felt at the presidential level and there have been leaders from different parts of the country since independence. The country is divided into six geo political zones which are; northwest, northeast, northcentral, southwest, southeast and south-south.
These geo political zones have the 36 states including FCT embedded in them and presidents have emerged from some of the zones save for the South east hence the clamour for region asking for an opportunity to run for presidency.
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This agitation has given rise to the people demanding for the man who has one time been the Senate president of the federal republic of Nigeria and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Anyim Pius Anyim. This demand is not hinged on selfishness but on equality and equity to be done on the seemingly marginalised region in Nigeria.
There has been little or no effort towards ensuring that the South Eastern people are given what is due to them which is evident even in the number of states in the region as compared to other regions in Nigeria.
The people are willing to give credence to Anyim Pius Anyim because of his achievements in the past as the Secretary to Government of the Federation during Goodluck Jonathan’s tenure as the President of Nigeria, Senate president in the year 2000 and a senator on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party in 1999.
In his time as the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, he was zealous in serving and rendering of service to the people. He believed that serving is not only for oneself but for the nation at large and as citizens, we are to give our all as we serve truthfully.
As a people in the Southeastern region, we have come to also understand that he is the man the region wants and needs because of his doggedness towards humanity and mankind. He puts the people before himself as he practices a Christlike lifestyle which is seen in his philanthropic nature. He brought so much zest and deftness in the management and the administrative organ of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.
He also is a man who lives up to one’s expectation, accepts as true in giving back to the society, highly reliable, efficient and trustworthy. These traits are evident not just in his immediate family but in his community Ishiagu as the area has seen some developments during his time in governance.
Furthermore, he has been chosen by the people due to his tenacity and service to the people he had led in the past. He is courageous, bold and carries out his duties without fear or favour. His beliefs are borne out of doing what one can do for the country and not what the country can do for oneself.
This was put into practice as he saw to the resolve of disputes and clashes between farmers and Fulanis. He also helped in restoring peace in some broken homes which shows how deeply he cares for people. Anyim Pius Anyim was able to bring about territorial order to quite a few people who were seeking social justice.
He also received some accolades from past leaders like Abdulsalam Abubakar, Ibrahim Babangida, Olusegun Obasanjo, Prof. Jerry Gana who took him under their wings. They were more than elated to having him under their employ and we all know that such praises cannot be given if they are not earned.
In addition, this agitation has put into the Southeastern people and the region that they are a society that can have a leader who can lead them as it opposes the ideology that says, ‘The Igbo people have no leader.’ They have proven to the country at large that they can come together in cohesion and decide whom they want to lead them on the quest towards not just governance, but good governance.
To add to the above, the people in the Southeastern region have come to understand that power cannot be gotten in divisiveness, but in oneness and in unity. They understand that for there to be a change and to show to the other regions that they can handle the affairs of a nation, they must speak in one voice and in the same vein ensure that their requests are granted.
In all fairness, though the region has been marginalised, the clamour for the need of a president from the Southeastern part should be granted which would show to the people of Nigeria that the country is for everyone. And that no one is exempted from running for any political seat.
Like the current governor of Abia state, Victor Ikpeasu once said, ´The only way to eradicate the marginalization of the Southeastern region of Nigeria, is to make themselves indispensable in the scheme of things.'
This statement made by him has birthed in the people the zest, zeal, willingness to serve and render service to the people without fear of favour and they are strongly behind the man Anyim Pius Anyim.
In conclusion, he is a man who is dogged, tactful, vibrant, selfless, relentless towards serving mankind, an ardent believer and true worshipper of God. There is a strong belief in his rendering of service to the country at large and to his community.
These are proofs that he is the man the Southeastern people need to steer the wheels of governance in 2023.
God bless Nigeria!!