Ahead of the 2019 general election, stakeholders from the Southeast and South-South geopolitical zones met on Tuesday in Owerri, the Imo State capital, to brainstorm on how to forge a common front in order to realize the political aspiration of people of the zone.
The stakeholders maintained that the interest of the two zones can be best served if they close ranks and speak with one voice and consequently vote in block like other zones.
The stakeholders, who converged under the aegis of the South East/ South South Network (SESSNET), emphasised the need for the zones to come together and fight against further political, social and economic marginalization of their people.
“If the 11 states in the two zones can come together like the South West, they can become a deciding factor in Nigerian politics and it will go a long way to check the marginalization of the zones,” they said.
One of the guest speakers at the meeting, Mrs. Aniko Briggs, advocated for complete restructuring that will allow the Niger Delta region have total control of their resources.
Former Governor of Anambra State, Mr. Peter Obi, who highlighted good governance as a solution to the challenges in the region, tasked the political leaders on the need to promote inclusive and accountable governance.
Obi, who was represented by one of his former commissioners, Prof. Stella Okunna, maintained that the lack of confidence in the leaders by those they govern is one of the reasons for their disconnection with the people.
“Many people in power today are not giving good governance and that is why they lack the support of their people.
“Personal communication with the people matters, they must reach out to the grassroots, governors should be willing to sacrifice their personal comfort for those they governed. They should show accountability, responsiveness and obey the rule of law,” the ex-governor said.
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