2019: Igbo interest is paramount to us – Ohaneeze

Ohaneze - 2019: Igbo interest is paramount to us - Ohaneeze
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By Raphael Ede,


Apex Igbo cultural organisation, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo has declared that they will only support a presidential candidate that has the interest of Ndigbo at heart and whose manifesto portrays that the person actually means well for Ndigbo, come 2019.
President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief John Nnia Nwodo, made this known in Enugu at a reception organized for him by the Enugu State chapter of Ohanaeze Ndigbo on his return from United States of America where he inaugurated the North Carolina chapter.
Nwodo said although the group was a non-political association, but it would advise Ndigbo to vote for a candidate of the political party that has the best programmes for Ndigbo in 2019.
He accused the federal government of deliberate neglect of the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, and wondered while the only international airport in the zone should be so neglected.
He said the neglect is reflection of the obvious marginalization of the people of South East geo-political zone in the socio-political and economic development of the country, particularly after the civil war that ended in 1970.
He said that the visit to US provided the opportunity for him to interact with other Igbo organizations and business men and to intimate them about the recent South East economic summit and the work of the Prof. Chuwkuma Soludo’s economic and political committee, which Ohanaeze inaugurated recently to articulate the road map for the socio-economic and political development of South East region.
The President General of Ohanaeze said that Nigerians in US were eager to partner with South East governors for the development of the region especially in the area of digital technology, agriculture and power in order to create employment opportunities for the young ones and revive the moribund industries in the area.
“Ohanaeze is a non political organization and the membership of Ohanaeze cuts across political lines. All Igbos are members of Ohanaeze from their town unions and they all exist in all the political partiers so I cannot be agent of any political party.
“What is important to Ohanaeze is that before the election, all the political parties must sell their manifesto to us so that we can advice Igbos appropriately as to who has protected our interest in their manifestoes. So the parties have not yet nominated their candidates; it is premature for me to begin to ask them what they have.
“When they candidates emerge I will seek audience with them to know what each would for Nigeria, especially the Igbo nation.
“There is nowhere in the world you have gone through an air transportation and you arrive in your place and the Customs will begin to ask you what are you carrying because there is international agreement for carriage of goods. All dutiable goods are assessed at the point of shipment because they go through an x-tray.
“But people carry personal effect and reach Enugu airport and they tell them to open their box to see what they are carrying, nobody does it in Lagos, nobody does it in Abuja, nobody does it in Kaduna, nobody does it in Kano. But it is done here.
“This kind of discriminatory treatment of Igbos is very infuriating. The total neglect of our international airport in Enugu is shattering, I don’t know how any government can willfully neglect a complete geopolitical zone, this is the only international airport in the South East zone and the facilities there are moribund,” he lamented.


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