The South East geo-political zone has been told in clear terms to jettison any plans of contesting the 2015 presidential elections as they are not yet prepared for it and instead negotiate a deal on infrastructural development of the region with President Goodluck Jonathan.
This was the view of maverick politician from Oguta, Imo State and former Senator, Chief Arthur Nzeribe
In a statement issued in Abuja, titled “We Must Not Allow Doomsday Prediction About Nigeria To Come True,” the former Senator said endemic disarray among Igbo politicians was the bane of previous failed attempts by the region to produce a president of Igbo extraction.
“Until we start speaking with one voice, we cannot get the Presidency. We should not try it now, we are not just ready for anything like that; we must first put our house in order” Mr. Nzeribe said.
He noted that Igbos have crossed the Rubicon already and advised that Mr. Jonathan’s second term ambition should be considered side-by-side a deal on what the South-East will get in return for its support of the president’s re-election.
“To whom much is given, much is expected. In 2011, Igbos gave near 100% of their votes to President Goodluck Jonathan. What has the President put in place to justify the huge votes given to him by the South-East? This is not a case of Oliver Twist. It is a legitimate demand that should be met”, he said.
According to him, “The issue of second Niger Bridge appears to have become object of campaign for vote from the Igbos by successive Presidents in Nigeria. It should be understood that the igbos will not wish to vote on infrastructure for vote.
“The emphasis now must not be whether President Jonathan can contest 2015 Presidential election or not, but rather, it should be honest assessment of his stewardship to Nigeria, in terms of democracy dividend”, the Oguta-born politician posited.
He dismissed the purported single-term pact President Jonathan signed with select people as a personal business of those involved which must not not pose an obstacle to the desire of Nigerians, who he said are interested in seeing real dividends of democracy, adding that “Legitimately, only Nigerians can determine whether the President should be re-elected or not.
“Finally, it will not do Nigeria as a Nation any favour if the President is seen to be quarantined politically”, Mr. Nzeribe declared.