NewsWest AfricaNigeria: South eastern presidency to bury 1967 war hatchet

Mon,21May2018

Posted on Monday, 01 October 2012 10:03

Nigeria: South eastern presidency to bury 1967 war hatchet

By Konye Obaji Ori

The grievances of Nigeria's 1967 civil war still linger in the country's south eastern provinces and they can only be atoned by the election of a president hailing from the region, a former governor has warned.

The war between the government and the Biafra secessionists ended in 1970.

Orji Uzor Kalu, a former governor of the south eastern state of Abia has vowed to lead the campaign for a Nigerian president from the Igbo ethnic group by n 2015.

Kalu said the time had come for other regions to give the south eastern region a chance to lead the vast country.

"The country is in trouble because the God's anointed people are not there yet, until they take over the mantle of leadership, Nigeria will not have a pride of place in the world," he said.

"Forty eight years after the civil war it is an insult for somebody to tell you that Igbos cannot be president.

"If all these tribes can be president, who among them is more qualified than an Igbo man; we are the salt of this nation, we are the best thing that happened to this nation."

Analysts blame Nigeria's frequent power struggles hinging on ethnicity on its colonial past where the British rulers used divide and rule tactics.

Nigeria, Africa's most populous country celebrates its 52nd independence anniversary on October 1, 2012.

"Anything good comes from the east and we are the genuine easterners; unless we rule this country the country will never be okay," Kalu said.

"Nigeria will continue to wobble on her journey to nationhood and socio-economic prosperity unless an Igbo is given an opportunity to lead the country."

Kalu's rhetoric follows a history economic, ethnic, cultural and religious tensions pitting Nigeria's various ethnic groups.

Only Nigeria's founding president Nnamdi Azikiwe hailed from the south east.

Kalu believes current President Goodluck Jonathan must be succeeded by an Igbo when his term ends in 2015.

 



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