The people from Southeast of Nigeria have set up a platform known as “Ndigbo for PMB 2019”. The platform was purposely formed to mobilize the rest of the people from the region, to support the anticipated reelection bid of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The National Coordinator of the group and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Abia State, Prince Paul Ikonne said it is high time the Igbos correct mistakes of the past and plan ahead for the 2019 presidential election.
He said thus: “Some of our South east brothers and sisters did not do too well in the last general election especially in the presidential election. So, in 2019, the Igbos must be properly positioned and physically seen to be supporting the president of Nigeria in the person of Muhammadu Buhari. “So, our mission is very simple: to bring Igbos together from wherever they are; for them to throw their support for the reelection of president Buhari. That’s what we would be championing.
“As you can see, we don’t have any other group so far calling on Mr. President to run for a second term. But this group, Ndi Igbo for PMB, will kick start that project, the second term project of Mr. President so that Igbos will regain their rightful position in Nigerian politics. It is our responsibility.
“So, this first meeting we are holding is to have our State Coordinators and national officers and then, map out our action plan having in mind that our principal responsibility is to mobilize Igbos in order to vote for the president in 2019.
“We will first of all ask him to run and in asking him to re-contest, we will assure him that Igbos will vote for him massively because if you look at him very well, the President believes in Igbos more than any other zone in this country considering his political calculation in previous year.
“The first time he ever ran for president, he used an Igbo man as his running mate. The second and the third time, the same thing. There is no other way one can show love than showing that he trusts you.
“But it was very unfortunate that some of our people did not see it coming, but thank God, we have a second chance to prove that we believe in the administration of Mr. President.
“One thing is clear, it is not a party affair, but an Igbo affair. So, irrespective of your party platform or affiliation, as long as you are an Igbo, you are part of this project.
“We are not doing a party thing, we are doing an Igbo thing. It is a platform for Igbos to come together, pledge their commitment, show it by action and them demonstrate in 2019 as it affects Mr. President.”
In his own contribution, the Abia State Coordinator of the group and former Speaker of the State Assembly, Martins Azubuike said that re-electing President Buhari in 2019, would end the marginalization of the Ndigbo.
“Looking at our position today as Ndigbo in the Nigerian polity and all the cries of our people, the question any good Igbo man will ask is what do we do for people to avoid these kinds of tears; cries of maginalization, cries of hatred and all of them. The answer is simple.
It is for us to get back to where Nigeria is, because when you are not placed where things are distributed, shared or discussed and if the insiders have not properly taken care of themselves, there is no way they will remember an outsider.
And I think that’s what this platform wants to do, to take the Igbo nation to where Nigeria is so that we can like others belong and get whatever is due to us from them”.