In his first working go to to Imo State since successful a second time period, President Muhammadu Buhari Thursday stated it was absurd to him that any Igbo man could be contemplating exiting Nigeria because the area dominates the economic system of the nation.
The president additionally assured that on the finish of his eight-year tenure in Could 2023, most financial and safety challenges confronted by the nation would have been addressed.
The president made the assertions in Owerri at a city corridor assembly with South-east leaders, which was the primary time Imo would host a president on working go to since 2009.
“It’s unthinkable for me that any Igbo man would think about himself to not be part of Nigeria. The proof is there for everybody to see that Igbos are accountable for Nigeria’s economic system,” he stated.
Buhari additionally stated he wished to be remembered because the president who stabilised the Nigerian safety and financial conditions, and delivered prosperity and conquer corruption.
The president reiterated his dedication to credible and honest elections in 2023, and promised to finish the Second Niger Bridge in addition to different on-going federal initiatives within the South-east geo-political zone.
President-Basic of Ohaneze Ndigbo Worldwide, Professor George Obiozor, in his remarks, assured Buhari of the continued assist of Ndigbo. However Obiozor demanded that Nigerians have to be ruled by the precept of fairness, irrespective.
Buhari said, “If there isn’t any safety, there’s nothing anybody can do regardless of how a lot you attempt or the initiative you might have. Safety is primary precedence and, then, the economic system. When folks really feel safe they’ll thoughts their very own enterprise.”
The president stated, although, combating corruption within the nation had turn into very subtle and troublesome, he would proceed to attempt to depart a long-lasting legacy of integrity and accountability within the governance.
Buhari stated, “No one can accuse me of getting corporations or mansions wherever within the nation and I thank God that I attempt to hold myself as clear as potential, in order that I can’t be taken hostage. I’ll do my greatest to make sure that Nigerians that attempt laborious, succeed of their efforts.”
He urged leaders of the area to sincerely educate their residents on the necessity to maintain their elected representatives accountable.
Buhari saluted and despatched his admiration to the Igbo for his or her resourcefulness and enterprising spirit. He stated, “The basic factor concerning the Igbo folks is that there isn’t any city you’ll go to in Nigeria with out seeing the Igbos being in-charge of both infrastructure or pharmaceutical business.
The president famous that no nation may make significant progress with out the event of infrastructure. He regretted the contributions of successive governments on the federal degree to the decay of essential infrastructure within the nation.
“I firmly imagine that while you get infrastructure proper, Nigerians will thoughts their very own companies,” he stated, including that as a bunch, Igbos stand to learn extra from the on-going improvement of infrastructure within the nation as a result of “they’re extra enterprising”.
Earlier in his remarks on the city corridor assembly, Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State stated Ndigbo believed in a united Nigeria predicated on “justice, fairness and equity.” Uzodinma thanked Buhari for addressing the pursuits of Igbos via deliberate coverage initiatives designed to present the folks a real sense of belonging, together with the on-going development of the Second Niger Bridge, amongst different initiatives.
The governor stated the folks of the area would stay grateful to the president for approving the institution of a Naval Base in Oguta Native Authorities Space of Imo State, including that as time unfolds, the financial advantages of the bottom would manifest.
He additionally recommended the president for strongly supporting the appointment of two outstanding Igbos – Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala and Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu – into key worldwide organisations as Director-Basic of the World Commerce Organisation and Assistant Director-Basic of the World Well being Organisation, respectively.
Obiozor assured the president of the assist of Ndigbo.
The Ohaneze president-general stated, “Ndigbo are dedicated to Nigerian unity and there’s information for these making an attempt to push us out of Nigeria. Ndigbo in Nigeria are like fish within the ocean and regardless of how tough the storm is, it can’t drive the fish out of the ocean.
“Mr. President, it’s on this context that we see a brand new daybreak in your distinguished presence in Igbo land and imagine that in your return to Abuja the importance and substance of this go to will kind new basis of a platform for significant dialogue on essential problems with concern to the Igbo nation.”
Obiozor stated the president’s go to was a reassurance that there was nonetheless cause for optimism for Nigeria and Nigerian unity.
He expressed perception that the go to would mark the start of a brand new chapter of dialogue, cooperation and understanding between Ndigbo and the Buhari administration.
He said, “Mr. President, in spite of everything Nigeria as gone via in its practically 60 years of chequered historical past of crises and continuity and the spectacular patriotic position of Ndigbo to make sure its unity and survival, the constant notion that the Igbos are separatists and secessionists agitators is a historic fallacy.
“Certainly, if the reality have to be instructed, Ndigbo are probably the most federating unit amongst all Nigerian residents. Usually talking, wherever in Nigeria you don’t discover the Igbos, run away one thing is flawed there.
“Igbos are market folks and journey adventurers. Consequently, what defines the Igbo character is propensity for friendliness and harmonious peaceable coexistence and spirit of universalism of mankind. That is who we’re. Our Igbo adage says ‘Ojemba Enwe Iro’, actually translated – a traveller makes no enemies.”
In keeping with the Ohaneze chief, one other false impression is that Igbos can’t communicate with one voice.
He stated, “Mr. President, regardless of all of the threats of secessionism or separatism going through the nation, there isn’t any doubt that no secessionist aspect can reach Nigeria supplied there’s good governance primarily based on fairness, justice and equity to all of the residents.
“Your Excellency, probably the most pressing and crucial want of Ndigbo right this moment is safety. The safety of Ndigbo in Nigeria and past has turn into a compelling main duty of significant concern for Ndigbo.
“Regrettably, our South-east zone has not too long ago turn into a theatre of battle, negating the peace-loving nature of our folks. On this context Ohanaeze Ndigbo requires the institution of a zonal and state police equipment to assist and complement the prevailing federal safety structure.”
Obiozor reiterated in a while the Come up Information Channel that Buhari’s go to to the Igbo heartland gave the Igbo optimism for the way forward for Nigeria.
In the course of the go to, Buhari commissioned 4 initiatives executed by the Uzodinma authorities, together with the Naze/Ihiagwa/Nekede/Obinze hyperlink highway, the Balloon Pushed/Flood Management drainage at Dick Tiger Highway, the Egbeada Bypass highway, and the New Exco-Chambers, Authorities Home, Owerri.
Addressing Imo residents on the inauguration of Egbeada bypass, named after Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, the president stated he was impressed with the extent of labor achieved by the state authorities.
“I’m more than happy with what I’ve seen and I guarantee you that I’ll assist Imo State inside the structure of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” Buhari stated.
Nonetheless, it was noticed that the sit-at-home order declared by the Indigenous Individuals of Biafra (IPOB) over the president’s go to was obeyed.
In strict compliance with the IPOB directive, residents of Owerri, the state capital, and, certainly, many of the states within the South-east complied absolutely with the order. Banks, workplaces, retailers and markets had been shut and the streets had been abandoned.
Deji Elumoye in Abuja and Amby Uneze in Owerri