Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The All Progressives Congress (APC) National Organising Secretary, Emma Ibediro, has warned the South East geopolitical zone that there would be no automatic presidential ticket in 2023 for them.
Ibediro, who spoke to newsmen in Abuja, yesterday, argued that Igbo presidency can only be a possibility if they work hard to convince other ethnic nationals through a party platform.
He specifically pointed out that Igbo aspiring to become Nigeria’s president on the APC platform, should work within the party to get the rest of Nigerians accept them for that position.
He warned that the South East needs to play good politics, the politics of engagement, the politics of consultation and politics of getting other parts of Nigeria involved in their aspirations.
“Igbo presidency is not a right, just like Hausa and Yoruba presidency is not a right too. Igbo presidency can only become possible if you work within the party and convince Nigerians to produce a Nigerian President of Igbo extraction.
“The fact that you are from the South East or from any other area is neither here nor there. So, if the people from the South East are aspiring to become Nigeria’s president, I think the first thing to do is to work within the party to get the rest of Nigerians accept them for that position, it is not a right,” he insisted.
Asked if he is in tune with other people’s clamour that his party should give the ticket to the Igbo, he said: “I don’t want to be emphatic that it must be an Igbo person. This party is not built on the platform of dictating to the people what they want.
“Remember, if you check the percentage of population of members of APC and check the population of Nigerians, you will see that we are even less than five per cent. So, we are talking about a president that will be a president of Nigeria, not a president of APC. So, first of all, under whatever platform you want to achieve that aspiration, you have to work to get yourself acceptable to that platform he belongs.
“It is not going to be an automatic award that Nigerians should give South East ticket for president. What of the situation where APC gives ticket automatically to somebody from the South East and he doesn’t win the very election. Have you considered that?
“The south East needs to play good politics, the politics of engagement, the politics of consultation, the politics of getting the other parts of Nigeria involved in their aspirations. But for now, I don’t think we are playing good politics. It is a question of give and take, I am an Igbo man and I need to be objective.
“The president campaigned in all the five states of the South East, just like he campaigned in every other states, but, what was there return in terms of votes. So, you also need to encourage people to do something for you. You cannot at every point be asking for something without giving something back,” he argued.
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