2019: Igbo youth groups insist on Obi as Atiku’s running mate
A coalition of Igbo groups has said that the choice of Peter Obi as vice presidential candidate to Atiku Abubakar of the People’s Democratic Party was in order.
The groups made up of Eastern People’s Youth Congress, Eastern Youths Progressives Movement and Igbo Youths Forum said that they were against the call by Northern youths calling on Atiku to drop Obi as his running mate.
The youths spoke in a statement signed by Sebastian Okiro, Okechi Odumuko and Kelechi Odogwu which was issued in Owerri on Thursday after its emergency meeting.
The statement read, “The leadership of various Eastern youth groups which include Eastern Peoples Youth Congress, Eastern Youths Progressive Movement, Igbo Youths Forum, Concerned Igbo Citizens, Igbo Agenda for Youths Survival, etc under the coalition of National Igbo Youths Council in our emergency leaders’ meeting at Owerri resolved as follows:
“That the Coalition of National Igbo Youths Council reiterates our total support and acceptance of the candidacies of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and Mr. Peter Obi to take over the governance of the Federal Government of Nigeria. The humility and simplicity of Mr. Peter Obi and his subsequent nomination as running mate to PDP presidential candidate have sent shivers down the spines of enemies of progressive Nigeria.
“That we, the grassroot Eastern Nigeria based groups condemned in its totality, the statements credited to the coalition of Northern youths groups that Atiku Abubakar should drop Mr. Peter Obi as his running mate. Ndigbo has never opposed to the candidacies of Northern region on elective positions; why should Northern youths think that they will dictate or direct which candidate will emerge from Igboland? This sponsored statement from our counterpart in the Northern region is a political insult to Ndigbo; it is capable of igniting political rancour among the Arewa and Igbo youths.
“That Mr Peter Obi has never sponsored or be a backbone for Biafra agitation as alleged by Northern youths. It is on record that before the release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from prison and during his stay, tours, rallies and private visitations, he did not have any contact with Mr Peter Obi. During his recent broadcast, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu did not mention or acknowledge Mr Peter Obi. It is still on record that Mr. Peter Obi does not sponsor other pro Biafra group leaders like Comrade Uchenna Madu of MASSOB, Chief Ralph Uwazuruike of BIM, Bar. Onwuka Kalu of BZM and others, how did the Northern youths arrive at their allegations that Mr. Peter Obi is a major sponsor of Biafra agitation?”
“That we the Coalition of National Igbo Youths Council describe the allegations of Northern youths as a mere blackmail fashioned to discredit Mr Peter Obi. We urge all the youths of Nigeria and entire electorate to ignore the sponsored media attacks on the person of Mr. Peter Obi.”Punch