Osita Okechukwu, Director General, Voice of Nigeria (VON), has said that the decision of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to zone the presidency to the South East is a healing process to give the South-East a sense of belonging in the Nigerian project.
The APC chieftain said that for a sense of justice conscience and equity it would morally right to zone the Presidency to South-East, stressing that if there is any political part that owes the Igbo, it is the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). He appealed to the main oposition party not to tig the zoning Convention.
The DG in an interview on Arise Television on Thursday appealed to the PDP not to rig the zoning convention because the convention according to him is based on equity, justice and good conscience.
“If the PDP goes ahead to rig the zoning Convention it will be very difficult for us to convince our leadership in the APC that they should zone to the South East. As I said earlier, the Convention was founded when the two dominant political parties decided to zone their presidential candidates in one zone and that was exactly what was done in 1999 when Chief Olu Falae flew the flag of Alliance for Democracy (AD)/All Nigeria Political Party (ANPP) and Chief Olusegun Obasanjo flew the flag of the PDP.
“Both of them came from the South-West and eight years after, the same hurdle was repeated when President Muhammadu Buhari and late President Umaru Yaradua came from the North-West geo-political zone and flew the ANPP and PDP flags, respectively.”
He said that those have become the yard stick for a successful convention, he said that it was bas on morals and such conventions according to him have brought peace and unity to the country. He said that when the APC sighted the PDP report, they saw the danger of rigging the convention.
According to Okechukwu, even though the convention is not on paper just like it is in the United Kingdom, he said;
“Why do we say that Britain has no written constitution, it is so because they rely more on conventions, which are routed on patriotism.
“It is true the convention is not written but it has helped to heal wounds, and that is our first focus. I am appealing to the PDP because what they have is a committee report and it has not been adopted. If there is any party that owes the South East; it is the PDP.
“I was on the campaign trail of 2003 presidential campaign, where the late Chuba Okadigbo was the Vice Presidential candidate to Mr President, we pleaded with Ndigbo not to put all their eggs in a basket that Muhammadu Buhari had a vote bank of 12 millon votes and that all he need was a critical supplement, they stuck to PDP and in 2007 we came once more with late Edwin Umezuoke, we also cautioned the Igbo but they stuck to PDP.
“If there is any political party that owes Ndigbo, it is the PDP and it will be very unfair if they neglect the people, but we will wait until the party adopts or rejects Governor Mohammadu Bala’s report.”
Okechukwu stressed that zoning the presidency to the South East will heal wounds and all the agitations coming from that zone will cease because the people would have a sense of belonging and people like Nnamdi Kanu and his group would sheathe their swords.