Rotimi Ameachi Declares for President
Says, “I’m an Igboman”
“Addressing the question of his Igbo identity he said, “My birth names are Igbo names Chibuike Amaechi. I am an Igbo man. Let no one deny me my Igbo heritage, birthright, ancestry, please!
“Unless you want to be sectional and deny the Igbo people. I have made myself clear repeatedly, that I, Chibuike Amaechi from Ikwerre, am an Igbo man. Our people are Igbo people.”
The minister urged his party, the APC, to look towards Ndigbo for the 2023 presidential ticket.
“As APC prepares to conduct the primaries to choose the party’s flagbearer, they must pay attention to all the geopolitical factors at play.
“Understandably, there is a strong push for power to shift to the South in 2023 and specifically to the Igbos. Igbos have not been at the centre since the Second Republic more than 40 years ago, when late Alex Ekwueme was Vice President in the Shehu Shagari Administration. Not surprisingly there is loud agitation from the Igbos that they should have their turn to lead the government.
“Other groups are also pleading the case of the Igbos in the name of equity and the stability of the country. Leader of Pan Yoruba sociopolitical group, Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, has warned that Igbos should produce the president in 2023 election, if Nigeria hopes to enjoy peace. The Association of Arewa Community in Igboland has also urged Nigerians to consent to an Igbo becoming the President of the country in 2023.
“Chibuike Amaechi is an Igbo man of Ikwerre stock. His hometown Ubima is on the border of Imo State and the fact that Nigeria’s modern geopolitical map places it in the South-South region does not change the fact that Ikwerre are a dialectical group of the Igbo nation. By ethnicity, language and heritage, Amaechi is no less Igbo than a man from Abriba, Owerri, Ebonyi, Awka or Enugu-Ukwu.”
Addressing those who insist that only Igbo from the Southeast are qualified since zoning is done on regional basis, the brochure said Amaechi coming from South-South gives him a unique advantage.
“In addition, he also has the unique advantage of being not only Igbo but a Niger Deltan. This means that Amaechi could also find favour with those currently insisting that the next President should come from the South-South on the basis that their region only completed one elected term under President Goodluck Jonathan.
“There are some in other parts of the country who may find it more politically expedient to throw their lot behind a South-South candidate than behind a “traditional” Igbo man.
“As much as Amaechi’s tribe and geo-political zone give him an advantage, he also has the advantage of being a candidate who is a true national figure – recognized all over Nigeria, with friends and allies across the length and breadth of the country.
“Some people vying for office also have recognizable names but are identified so resolutely with their tribe or zone that they cannot be effective national consensus candidates.
“Few of Amaechi’s contenders have had the same opportunity or share the same disposition that allows him to travel to every state of the Federation, forge alliances and build relationships.
“Beloved by his people in the Niger Delta, he is also embraced by the South East as a true Igbo son and lauded in the South West for providing the Lagos – Ibadan railway system which has been a source of pride and renewed economic activity in the region. The North see him as a friend, a truly detribalized Nigerian who does not discriminate against tribe or religion and who has worked tirelessly to support President Muhammadu Buhari.”
Amaechi said the cap fits him because he has a “thorough understanding of the complexities of the nation – the challenges of balancing the interests and influences in a country of different persuasions, traditions, cultures, religions.”
“While others fan the flames of ethnic tension for their own selfish political advantage, Amaechi has consistently championed national unity, identifying ethnic divisiveness as an obstacle to progress.”