Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has lambasted the Igbos for IPOB's secessionist agitation.
Since Major General Aguiyi Ironsi was assassinated on July 29, 1966 in a counter-coup, the Igbos haven’t produced another Nigerian President.
The closest the Igbos have come to the presidency in modern history was Alex Ekwueme who served as Vice President to Shehu Shagari from 1979 to 1983.
Igbos have served as Senate Presidents in the fourth republic however; and Ike Ekweremadu who hails from Enugu State is currently Nigeria’s Deputy Senate President.
As most Igbos scream marginalization; with some of those cries culminating in secessionist agitations, Okorocha had the following to say during an interactive session with journalists in Owerri…
The reason Igbos haven’t yet smelt the nation’s number one position since 1999, says Okorocha, is because their politics game is piss poor.
“Igbos have to change their strategy, in order to reclaim their relevance in Nigeria’s power equation. Quote me anywhere, Igbos play the worst politics in Nigeria”, Okorocha says.
Incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari harvested just a handful of votes from the Southeast region in 2015.
However, the Southwest and Northern geopolitical zones held hands across the divide to hand Buhari the presidency.
According to Okorocha, the alliance between the North (Hausas) and the Southwest (Yorubas) is only going to wax stronger in the years ahead.
“Today, Hausa have realised they can win an election without Igbo,” Okorocha said.
“Hitherto, Hausa used to think they could not win elections without Igbo. Now, they believe with the combined massive populations of Lagos and Kano, they no longer need Igbo to win, hence, the latest alliance between Hausa and Yoruba.
“So, where is Igbo today in Nigerian politics?”
Nnamdi Kanu’s Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has been declared an illicit terrorist outfit by the State and Army alike after its separatist agitation turned horribly violent.
Okorocha says IPOB’s campaign was childish from the off. He also said the group could have done with a better strategy.
In Okorocha’s words: “I have always said Igbo have this feeling of abandonment. IPOB would have made better impact if they had operated under any other name other than Biafra, to push their demand for equity in sharing of the nation’s political and economic resources. The call for secession was childish.
“IPOB should have fought their struggle like the Niger Delta youth, Arewa youth and Yoruba group".
According to Governor Okorocha: “Check it out: No Hausa man living in the Southeast owns a duplex neither can you see a Yoruba man who lives in a room and parlour apartment of his own or an investment worth N20 million. But, should Nigeria break up today, Igbo will lose trillions in property and other investments in Lagos, the North and other parts of the country”.
“The South-South has produced a president, the south-west has produced a president and vice president while the North has produced many presidents.
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“Regrettably, IPOB activities have created fears in the minds of Hausa and other ethnic nationalities in the country, that, once Igbo becomes president, they would secede.”