• Tuesday, July 16, 2024
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BusinessDay

Chekwas Okorie: Igbos will support party that fields candidate from region in 2023

Chekwas Okorie, founding national chairman of APGA, returns

Chekwas Okorie, former national chairman of the defunct Unity Party of Nigeria (UPN) has said the Southeast geopolitical zone would be only keen on voting for a political party that would zone the presidency to the region in 2023.

Though zoning is unconstitutional in Nigeria, political leaders say it was only the solution to equal opportunity for the three major ethnic groups to have an opportunity to govern the country.

Agitations for an Igbo presidency among leaders of the region have increased in recent time. The leaders say the region must be given the presidency after incumbent President Muhammadu Buhari tenure completes his second term in 2023.

Speaking in an interview with Businessday Monday, Okorie noted that leaders of the Southeast had met and resolved that any political party that fielded candidates from the region would get massive votes and support from all Igbos across the country.

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“We have resolved that any party that gives the presidential ticket to Igbo man in 2023 would get the votes of Igbos massively across the country and that is our priority ahead of the 2023 elections.

Okorie, who was a founding member of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), expressed dismay that the region had continuously been denied the presidency, stressing that there was no better time to actualise the Igbo presidency than 2023.

He warned the two major parties in the country that the region was tired of being used and abandoned, adding that it would not accept any position other than the presidency from the two major parties in Nigeria.

According to him, “Igbo presidency is realisable; it is far more realisable in 2023 than any other time. It is conventional but not in the constitution, even that rotation is in the PDP constitution and in APC where I belong. It is becoming a bit difficult to convince Nigerians that after eight years of President Buhari that another Northerner would want to continue from there.

“Everything looks favourable for the South to be considered for the APC ticket. But when you now talk about the South, the Yorubas have had their turn when Obasanjo ruled for eight years, after that we had Umaru Musa Yar’adua and Goodluck Jonathan tenure, we know that Jonathan moved on to rule for six years.

“So, it is only the Southeast and for the interest of the equity, it is appropriate that the region gets the president slot in 2023. But the way I am seeing it, the PDP may not zone the presidency to the Southeast in 2023”.