By Sola Ojo, Kaduna
Chairman, Senate Committee on foreign and domestic debts in the 8th Assembly (Kaduna Central), Senator Shehu Sani, has once again, restated rotational presidency and made a specific case for Igbo presidency come 2023.
The human right activist turned lawmaker stated this in Kaduna when he hosted some Igbo leaders who had long history of residing and working in Northern Nigeria, especially, Kaduna state.
To Sani, the Igbo in Nigeria have made tremendous sacrifice for the unity, peace and progress of this country and have made the country proud in a number of respects – from Chinua Achebe of yesterday to Chima Amanda of today.
According to him, in the field of commerce and industry, the Igbo are in the forefront of leading Nigeria to where it is supposed to be, “since our Independence to this very moment, there is no any national or international sporting that there is no Igbo sacrificing themselves, struggling hard, wearing the national flag with respect and bring laurels and trophies to our country.”
He said, “Igbo have in the last 50 years, demonstrate that they are true Nigerians. If you read Igbo from the point of those who want to break away, then, you will make a different judgement. But, when you read Igbo from the ones you see in your homes, villages and towns in the North and in all parts of Nigeria, then, your views and positions about them will be quite different.
“They have over the years, proven to be reliable national species of Nigerians. The best way to appreciate the Igbo, I believe is to appreciate that glory which they have brought to our country and nationalistic spirit in them.
“We are from the North and we were born here. But, we have been born here to have also see Igbo that we were born together here in the North.
“If there is anyone who spoke for Igbo in the North, if there is anyone who stood for Igbo in the North, I believe it was Wada Nas of blessed memories. Wada Nas for a decade and a half ago, was speaking out for Igbo. What he had said in the past are still relevant today as it was then.
“Each time the Igbo are marginalised, the nation is empowering those who want to break away. Where my house is today, is the same ward where the house of the late Sardauna of Sokoto was.
So, my own position is that, any government that is worth of itself being in office, should treat each and every Nigerian with dignity, honour and give everyone a sense of belonging with a quality equity and justice.
“But we must be very sincere with ourselves if we can call a spade a spade and a spoon. The whole of Nigeria should have a new thinking and perception of the Igbo of today.
“It is unfair to hold Igbo children to ransom or hostage to historical events of which there was no common unanimity of Igbo. Some of the greatest Igbo we have in the history were born in the North including the late Nnamdi Azikiwe, even the Ikemba of Nnewi. So, the Nigerian state should not treat Igbo like apartheid where one nationality is superior to another.
“Rotational presidency is indispensable for the unity of this country. Those who felt that one part of the country should continue to produce the president till they kingdom come are not conscious if the fact that there were warnings in our history which we must not forget and we should take lessons from.
“There is no village or town in the North no matter how remote it is we don’t see an Igbo man. If they did not believe in Nigeria, they wouldn’t have been here for generation to stay.”
Earlier, Edwin Ojukwu and Ejike Stephen Ajibo, who led the delegation on a courtesy call on the senator, said, the visit became necessary in their quest to have Igbo either as president or vice president of the federal republic of Nigeria in 2023 political space. (The Sun)