Chief Chekwas Okorie has revealed the Biafra agitation championed by the late Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu was not to secede from Nigeria but to get equal opportunity in the country.
Okorie who is the national chairman of the United Progressive Party (UPP) and the party’s presidential candidate in the 2015 general elections in an interview with Vanguard, said Ojukwu’s Biafra declaration was not to leave Nigeria.
He insisted that Ojukwu was more concerned about the fate of the Igbos and championed equal opportunities for them.
He said: “If you are looking at the Biafra that Ikemba talked about before he died, or Biafra as an ideology, count me in because the Biafran ideology ought to be the Nigerian ideology, a true Nigerian ideology.
“We have had a situation here where a book was written entitled, ‘We are all Biafrans’ and that book was presented by Atiku Abubakar.
Not long ago, in May actually, the Yar’ adua foundation convened a seminar to mark 50years of Biafra. “The Acting President was there as a special guest and he spoke.
Former President Obasanjo was there and so many top Nigerian leaders including my humble self. So the issue of Biafra is something that would remain topical and it depends from the angle you see it “If you see it from the angle that what led to that war should be avoided, then that is positive.
But if you are looking at it from the point of view of breaking away from the country that is the negative side for which no political party that is national in nature would be part of.
I have always talked about restructuring, self determination and giving Nigerians the opportunity to decide their fate through referendum.”
Okorie noted that Nigeria would have been better if the people questioned the lopsided appointment made by President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said: “The national assembly is not bothered that there is a law that says that if the PENCOM DG is removed, another one would come from the same zone, they are not bothered about what the law say. They are only concerned about the office of SGF, the office of EFCC and all that. I am not impressed.”
Meanwhile, the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohaneze Ndigbo, revealed the kind of relationship it shares with the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
In a statement issued in Abakaliki on behalf of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of Ohaneze Ndigbo Worldwide, the national publicity secretary, Prince Uche Achi-Okpaga, described the relationship between the national leadership of Ohaneze and IPOB as that of father and son.
The group declared that no amount of foul comments will pitch it against members of IPOB, noting that their relationship was cordial.