2023: Igbo leaders, clerics back alliance of South-east presidential aspirants – Premium Times

Igbo leaders
The South-east Council of Traditional Rulers and Igbo Archbishops and Bishops on Peace and Conflict Resolution have expressed their support for the alignment of presidential aspirants from the region ahead of 2023.
The group also insisted that it is the turn of the South-east to produce the country’s president in 2023 in the spirit of equity and fairness.
Seven presidential aspirants from the South-east under the platform of the All Progressive Congress (APC) had, on Sunday, resolved to support any aspirant from the region who gets the party’s presidential ticket for the 2023 general election.
The decision came about a month after their counterparts in the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) took similar decision to ensure the emergence of a candidate from the region ahead of the 2023 presidential election.
In a statement, on Tuesday, jointly signed by the chairman of the group, Nnaemeka Achebe, the Obi of Onitsha, and its Secretary, Chibuzo Raphael Opoko, a representative of the Igbo Bishops, the group commended the aspirants for the decision.
It also thanked Nigerians from other regions of the country who have shown support for the region’s quest to produce a president in 2023 just as it frowned against those allegedly frustrating the efforts.
“Some individuals have been de-marketing the south-east region and their presidential aspirants, thereby undermining the shared goal of a president of Nigeria from the South-east region in 2023.
“The joint body is guided by a moral compass in calling the attention of those actively undermining the aspirations of all Nigerians (who are supporting the region’s presidency quest) to demonstrate and harness inclusiveness, equity and merit through the emergence of candidates from the South-east region, that they act against moment of history,” the group stated.
While recalling that the region has been supporting candidates from other regions of the country since 1999, the group appealed to other regions of the country to reciprocate the gesture by supporting candidates from the South-east in their various political parties’ presidential parties.
“We insist that truth should speak for itself alone: it is the turn of the South-east and we call on all Nigerians and especially the delegates at the presidential primaries to select one of the South-east candidates as the flag bearer for their party in the forthcoming election.
“Each is qualified and each will lead in the tradition of past presidents, as a leader for all. Their antecedents promise a leadership that will change the tide and reverse the dwindling fortunes of Nigeria,” it added.
There have been calls from the South-east leaders that the region should be allowed to produce a president for the first time in 2023.
Some leaders of the region have argued that the emergence of a Nigerian president from the South-east would end the Biafran agitation and the insecurity in the region.
Both the ruling APC and the opposition PDP, the two dominant political parties in Nigeria, have been under pressure to pick their presidential candidates from the South-east.
The APC has yet to take a formal decision on zoning its presidential ticket to the region, while the PDP has thrown its ticket open.
The two parties have scheduled their presidential primaries to be held in May with over 11 aspirants from the South-east in the race for the parties’ tickets.
While PDP slated its primaries to hold from May 28 to May 29, the APC fixed its primaries for May 29 to May 30.

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