Obi of Onitsha Knocks South-East Govs, Ohanaeze Ndigbo Over Stagnation Of Region

alfred-nnaemeka-achebe-obi-of-onitshaThe Obi of Onitsha, Igwe Alfred Nnaemeka Achebe, yesterday, knocked the South-East Governors’ Forum and Ohanaeze Ndigbo for showing little interest in the growth of the zone.

The monarch, who delivered a lecture with the theme, “Think Nigeria, Invest in Anambra (Aku ruo uno)” at the Dora Akunyili Women’s Development Centre in Awka, as part of activities to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the creation of Anambra State, expressed dismay that selfishness had put the two bodies in disarray.

The Obi of Onitsha, who doubles as Chairman of the Council of South-East Traditional Rulers, lamented that the Governor’s Forum, which was meant to be a rallying force for Ndigbo, has failed to play that role because of selfish political interest of Governors, while the apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, had been enmeshed in series of controversies.

On the political and economic development of Nigeria, Igwe Achebe reiterated the call for restructuring of the country in a manner that would make for true fiscal federalism.

“I truly believe that the long term interest of Ndigbo will best be served in a Nigeria that is just, fair and equitable and provides adequate safeguard as scope for individuals and ethnic nationalities to freely realize their aspiration and contribute their quota to the overall development of the country.

“Such a situation will best be achieved by restructuring the country into a true political and fiscal federation based on the existing six geo-political zones at pre 1996 Constitution. Such an arrangement will afford the best platform for Ndigbo to actualise their character”.

At the function where the state Governor, Chief Willie Obiano, his Deputy, Dr. Nkem Okeke and his predecessor, Mr. Peter Obi were absent, Igwe Achebe also said Ndigbo should not neglect investing in their homeland just as he called upon oil magnates in Anambra State, led by Prince Arthur Eze, to come together and ensure that the state-owned Orient Petroleum does not go under.

In the lecture, the first class traditional ruler enjoined people of the South East zone to revive the moral and cultural values that were held high in the region before now, stressing that Ndigbo needed urgent attitudinal change and must learn to respect one another and their host communities anywhere they reside.

Noting that Anambra had what it takes either in human and economic resources to be like Japan, Malaysia, Israel, China, India among other developed climes, the Obi of Onitsha advocated that Nnewi, Onitsha and Aba in Abia State, be transformed to become industrial hubs in Nigeria.

“Ndigbo must think home and act home, in the spirit of Aku-ruo-uno to evolve a philosophy, ideology, strategy and action plans for self-sufficiency, self-reliance and contentment under any circumstance”, he advocated.

The royal father, however, commended Governor Obiano for flushing out criminals and making Anambra conducive for investment.

The event was attended by prominent citizens from the state including former vice president, Dr. Alex Ekwueme; Constitutional Lawyer, Prof Ben Nwabueze (SAN), former President General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Dr. Dozie Ikedife; Senator Joy Emodi; the first female governor in Nigeria, Dame Virgy Etiaba; Chief Cosmas Maduka (Coscharis) and Anambra State House of Assembly Speaker, Rita Maduagwu, amongst others.

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