SAM OBINNA IBE reports that it was a gathering of who is who in Uturu Abia state as the 5th World Igbo Summit was observed recently at the campus of Gregory University
The fifth World Igbo Summit which held from January 2, to January 4, 2020 at Gregory University, Uturu witnessed a large turnout of eminent Igbo sons and daughters. It was a sort of strategy meeting organised to with a view to actualising a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction.
As a precursor to the summit, the organisers had held a world press conference in Abuja during which they emphasized the need for the Igbo ethnic group to begin to have a handshake across the Niger with a view to getting other ethnic nationalities to support the cause.
In Abuja they also appealed to the media to keep the issue to the front burner.
At the Uturu Summit proper, the keynote address was delivered by Ambassador Humphrey Orjako, former Permanent Representative of Nigeria to United Nations and other International organizations at Geneva and Ambassador to Switzerland.
The Orjiakor speech culminated in the setting up of a communique drafting committee which had an ex-ambassador, Prof George Obiozor and national coordinator, World Igbo Summit Director General, Dr. Ifedi Okwenna as chairman and secretary, respectively. The Summit noted amongst other things that for Nigeria’s survival, the country has to chose from three options: (i) To retain the dysfunctional status quo. (ii) To balkanize the country through a rash of successions (iii) Reset or restructure the country to its federal origin.
The summit noted that the Igbo have cause to lead the campaign for a restructured Nigeria and that the restructuring process should start with the restructuring of the social, cultural, political and economic systems of the Igbo.
It underscored “the need for future Igbo generations to internalize our own narrative of how we got where we are and where we wish to go.”
While regretting that in the history of Nigerian democracy, the Igbo who are one of the tripod of the country has not produced a President, it noted that the urgent need to resume the outreach programme to other ethnic nationalities and zones of the country with a view to achieving support for the Nigerian President of Igbo extraction and restructuring of Nigeria.
It was in view of the foregoing, the summit resolved as follows that Ndi Igbo should pursue both restructuring of Nigeria and emergence of Nigerian President of Igbo extraction as both are not mutually exclusive.
The summit urged other ethnic nationalities and zones, to as a matter of justice, equity and fairness, support the emergence of a Nigerian President of Igbo extraction in 2023.
It also stated “the leadership of all political parties, should as a matter of justice, equity and fairness,
cede the nomination of their Presidential candidates to the South-East.”
It mandated the President-General of Ohanaeze to in consultation with Ime-obi constitute a Pan-Igbo organizing Committee to develop and pursue a sustainable strategic plan of action for the “handshake outreach” across Nigeria.
The communique further noted that the “handshake programme” should cumulate in a grand finale during which the harmonized positions of the alliance zones would be adopted and publicized as a basis of a joint bill of the people to the National Assembly to pass into law and use as a document for convoking a national conference for restructuring.
The alliance zones would use the harmonized positions to commence the arduous task of lobbying and working with politicians, political parties, interest groups and other stakeholders to come on board the movement for restructured Nigeria.
Other highlights of the communique are, “On its part, Ohaneze Ndigbo will sustain a vigorous publicity, press campaigns, sustained education and mobilization of the electorates and encourage peaceful mass rallies in support of the restructuring project.
“In pursuit of these demands and rights, all these resolutions will be done in accordance
with the principles of municipal and international laws and best practices.
Among those in attendance were Chief John Nnia Nwodo, the President-General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Navy Commordore Ebitu Ukiwe(Rtd), former Chief of General Staff, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim, former Senate President and Secretary to the Federal Government, His Excellency, Ambassador George Obiozor, former Ambassador to the United States of America.
Others were Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife, former Governor ofAnambra State, Prof Okwesilieze Nwodo, former Governor of Enugu State, Prof Chinedu Nebo former Minister of Power and Vice-Chancellor, University of Nigeria, Nsukka and Federal University Oye Ekiti, Mazi Sam Ohuabunwa, President, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria amongst others.