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Don't Drag South-South Into Your Divisiveness, Eta Slams Ohanaeze

Ntufam Hilliard Eta
The National Vice Chairman of the governing All Progressive Congress, APC Ntufam Hilliard Eta has asked the Ohaeneze Ndigbo to desist from dragging the South-South region into the "divisiveness of the South-East region" of the country.

Eta who was reacting to the media report credited to the President General of Ohaeneze that the organization was planning to sue President Muhammadu Buhari for alleged marginalization of the South-South and South-East in appointment into federal agencies said that Ohaeneze does not represent the interest of the South-South as such cannot speak for the region.

The APC National Vice Chairman who described the allegation as laughable and unfortunate said this in a statement signed by him and made available to newsmen in Calabar.

According to the statement, "My interest has been drawn to a Media Publication at the instance of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, apex Igbo soco-cultural organization laying claim to alleged marginalization of the South East and South South geopolitical zones of the country in the area of appointments into public offices under the present federal government.

"In his words, President General of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Dr. Nnia Nwodo said appointments made so far showed '' a patently discriminatory attitude towards the South East and South South States'' and that for that reason it has resolved to sue the Federal Government.

"For the records, it must be mentioned that the South East has always been involved in coercing the South South into driving their agenda of divisiveness when in actual fact its intention was not to represent it's interest. The Biafran episode still leaves a sad memory in the minds of our people to ponder on.

"Besides, political history has revealed that the South East has had a mercantilist approach to power play and governance, an ideology that manifested in the exchanges and changes of the leadership of the Senate during the 4th and 5th Assembly.

"The South South having suffered serious neglect from oil exploration activities have decided to carve a niche for itself by threading the path of decorum, tact and responsibility to drive home developments beyond appointments into public offices.

"This difference in ideology and understanding of the concept of development informs in certain terms our apprehension by the South East to drive the agenda for an aspect of the zone's development.

Suffice it therefore to say that given this scenario, it would be skeptical to see the South South accept a representation by the South East apex body especially when the Biafran agenda it attempted to foist on the South  South populace is still being vigorously pursued.

"This particular agenda and others are at variance of course to the option of peace, national unity and stability which leaders, the people and critical stakeholders of the South South are greatly averse to".

The statement further noted that " the South South would employ pragmatic approach rather than the confrontational to address issues of marginalization if the need arises and would therefore advice our fellow South East body to tow this line"

Eta explained that "Ohanaeze Ndigbo should remember too that the South South is endowed with quality leaders who have the capacity and charisma to fit in to any and every position of responsibility and has had a retinue of them appointed into public offices under the present Federal Government.

"On this strength, we view the attempt to coerce the South South into the marginalization contention by Ohanaeze Ndigbo as not only laughable and spurious but unfortunate.

"The South South will continue to instead appreciate the Federal Government for the many appointments given to our sons and daughters so far even as we'll negotiate and pray for more.".

He pledged that the region will continue to sustain the robust relationship with the Federal Government to encourage it to make good its plan to fix the neglected region.

"On behalf of the All Progressives Congress and good people of the South South, I advise all indigenes and stakeholders in the zone to reject the confrontation option and refuse to be coerced into needless agitations by the Ohanaeze Ndigbo or whatever name called under whatever guise", the statement reads.
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