………Ohaneze Ndigbo Voices Out .
The apex social cultural body of the Igbo people has literally accused President Muhammadu Buhari of recycling old and corrupt politicians for ministerial position which according to the body, some of the nominees have corruption cases pending in the court as well as other anti graft agencies.
President General of the Igbo group, Chief Nnia Nwodo, faulted President Buhari for allegedly appointing incompetent hands to serve adding that Nigeria needs people with vast knowledge when it comes to the business of governance and National issues. Before now, a strategic and political risk consultancy, Menas Associates, had taken a critical look at President Buhari’s ministerial nominees, and returned an uninspiring verdict.
President Buhari sent a list of 43 ministerial appointees to the Senate on July 23, containing 14 reappointments from his first term. The new names are mostly All Progressives Congress (APC) loyalists from across the country’s six geopolitical zones many having helped Buhari win his disputed second term.
“In his first term, Buhari was widely criticised by the party faithful for neglecting them after they had helped him come to power. It appears that he has now addressed this criticism with his new cabinet selection. The price of this patronage is that the cabinet is filled with more conservative options rather than reformers or technocrats.
“Few of the new ministers will be able to persuade Buhari to pursue the necessary key reforms such as: floating the exchange rate to reduce pressure on foreign currency reserves; reducing or ideally scrapping costly fuel subsidies; or implementing basic tax measures,’’ the risk consultants said.
Nwodo further condemned the detention of the Convener of #RevolutionNow protests, Omoyele Sowore, and also for the umpteenth time, called for the unbanning of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
Nwodo who was a guest on Arise TV’s live personality interview programme equally alleged that the military carefully structured the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria against Ndigbo, noting that the constitution is based on extreme discrimination and jaundiced against his people.
While noting further that the Igbo by every available record should not have the least number of local government areas, states and National Assembly seats, he added, ‘’the military designed a constitution at the end of the war to contain the Igbo. We have the smallest number of local governments of all the six geopolitical zones; smallest number of representatives in the National Assembly; the smallest number of local government councils, two states in the North West of Nigeria have as much local governments as we have in the South East.’’
The Ohanaeze leader said the mandate of the apex Igbo body was not to actualise a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction but to push for a restructured federation where everybody would be free to achieve its dreams; an egalitarian society where people develop at their pace.
He said Ndigbo had been contained by the federal authorities, through their policies and programmes, but stated that their potential; energies, creativity and industry would enable them emerge at the world stage.
Nwodo also said that there was no alternative to restructuring the country even as he further accused President Buhari of not being faithful to his manifesto. He recalled that Buhari had promised to restructure Nigeria during the 2014 electioneering but reneged after he won the election.
“The president has not been faithful to his manifesto. After he won the election, his party set up a committee on restructuring headed by Kaduna state Governor, Nasir el-Rufai and they made this report that which was accepted by the national leadership of his party.
“And when he faced interviewed by the press, he said that our problem was not structure but process. He swallowed his manifesto; he swallowed the decision of his national executive committee and he says we are looking for our personal interest. It’s rather the president that is looking for his own personal interest,’’ he said.
For the Igbo group, President Buhari has failed them by not resonating the aspirations of the majority of Nigerians.