Chairman of the defunct Presidential Screening Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu has said that the party would not sideline the south east geopolitical zone when the incoming government of Mohammadu Buhari is formed.He said that though the zone was yet to fully embrace APC, the vote it gave the party in the March 28 Presidential election helped to produce the president-Elect, Buhari.
Had Ndi igbo voted massively as they did in the 2011 elections for the ruling PDP, Onu said that victory for APC wouldn’t have been made possible.
Onu who was also the national chairman of the defunct All Nigerian People’s Party, ANPP and former governor of Abia State while paying host to Igbo traditional rulers in the 19 Northern States and FCT under the umbrella of Eze Udo in his Abuja residence yesterday said that APC was a political party was formed to evolve a new Nigeria and end the misrule of the PDP, urging the Igbo to vote massively for the party in the governorship and House of assembly elections.
He said said, “We thank you so much for all that you have been doing for our people. We know because of you, you have allowed prosperity to spread in the South East because you are men specially gifted by God. You have done so well. I know many of you personally but you have never been that selfish to just keep your success and prosperity to yourself.
I want to also tell you that the APC is determined to build a new nation out of Nigeria. That is the thrust of APC – to build a nation that Nigerians would be proud of; a nation that would win the respect of other countries because most people don’t realize that you don’t ask anybody to respect you and you expect it. No. You earn respect because of your own contributions and that is what APC is determined to do. To make sure that Nigeria would be respected by other nations.
“l want to assure you that Ogbonaya Onu would never disappoint you. We will at all times do those things that you would be proud of because for us the name is very important even though we live at a time that many people don’t think of their names but think of other things”.
Earlier, the leader of the traditional rulers, Dr. Uche Egenti Onu who also spoke on behalf of the delegation described Onu as a rallying point of the south east, noting that with men like him, the zone was sure to be fully represented in the new government.
“I thank you so much and l want to assure you that because we have people like you the future of the South East is great. The best for the people of the South East is yet to come. You stand out because of what you did a few weeks ago and I want to assure you that the APC would not forget the contributions of the South East.
“If you look at the records of INEC, it would appear that the people of the South East did not support the APC, but the APC is a party that is committed to the unity of our great nation and APC realizes that the South East, the Igbos need Nigeria just like Nigeria needs the Igbos and if for any reason we fail to do that which is important and would help our people in building a new nation, definitely the problems would be ours.
“But the APC is aware of the fact that the last presidential election, on the 28 March that that election was rigged; that election was manipulated, that election was conducted in a way you cannot describe it as credible.
“The APC is also aware that in the South East, if you add all the votes that the South East contributed to the ruling party in 2011 and assuming if that volume of votes had been contributed this time around, APC would not have won the election and APC is also aware that if you look at the margin in the 19 Northern states and FCT in 2011 and compare it with this year you will see clearly that the APC did far better and it is because of you, because you helped to give more votes than what APC had in 2011.
“So the contributions of the people of the South East to the victory of Gen. Muhammadu Buhari is something that you should be proud of and we are assuring the APC that in the years to come the South East would be the core of the APC. Today it appears as if we are the weakest, but we want to assure the APC that in the years to come the South East would be the real core of APC”, he said.
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