We Haven’t Endorse Atiku Presidential Bid, Says Ndigbo
Rumour had made the rounds that Ohanaeze Ndigbo was part of the Igbo groups that met in Enugu late last year at a meeting presided over by Constitutional lawyer, Prof. Ben Nwabueze to endorse Atiku. It was further said that the purported endorsement was a way to show gratitude for Atiku picking Mr. Peter Obi as his running mate.
But at a press briefing in Enugu to mark its second year in office, the leadership of the Igbo socio-cultural organization said it was yet to adopt any candidate.
Apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, yesterday denied endorsing the presidential aspiration of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
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According to the group, “We did not endorse Atiku Abubakar, neither have we adopted any presidential candidate. We made it clear that we are committed to ensuring the restructuring of Nigeria for the benefit of the people. We have said that we would identify with candidates whose restructuring agenda tallies with our views. We also made it clear that Ohanaeze would meet sometime this month to ventilate the issue and be able to arrive at a conclusion.
The Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the group, Mr. Chuks Ibegbu, and the Special Adviser on Media to the president general of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Emeka Attamah stated that there was no basis yet for the endorsement of any candidate in the election until a meeting that would comprise governors, senators, traditional rulers, among other Imeobi members, is convened before the end of the month.
Ohanaeze said it would use the meeting to review the programmes of the various candidates to know the one that tallies with the issue and make its stand.
Ohanaeze Indigbo stated that within the last two years, it had been able to build bridges with other ethnic nationalities in the country, initiated and pursued restructuring to make it a national mantra, restored the dignity of Igbo race in Nigeria as well as handled explosive issues like quit notice issued to Igbo in the north, pro-Biafra agitations, Fulani herdsmen/farmers crisis in Igbo land and Operation Python Dance.
The group listed lack of understanding among Igbo people and funding as the greatest challenges it had faced, noting that Ndigbo would achieve more if they were united.