President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo and former Minister of Information, Dr John Nwodo, has said it is the turn of the Igbo to produce the president of Nigeria in 2023, warning that anybody plotting to deny the Igbo the slot will be throwing the country into chaos.
Nwodo said an Igbo presidency after the expiry of President Muhammadu Buhari’s second term is “incontestable, if there must be justice and fairness in the system.”
Speaking in a Sunday Tribune interview, Nwodo asked all political parties in the country to look in the direction of the South-East while shopping for presidential candidates in the next general election.
“It is undoubtedly the turn of the Igbo to run for president in 2023 under the present constitution. Anybody who denies this fact is deliberately throwing the country into chaos.
“It is incontestable and if there must be justice and fairness in the system, it must be the turn of the Igbo and I implore all political parties to take cognizance of this fact,” he said. (Read the full interview on pages 24 and 25).
In a related development, Yoruba leader and emeritus Professor of History, Professor Banji Akintoye, has said that the break-up of Nigeria is only a matter of time unless something urgent was done.
Professor Akintoye spoke in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, on Saturday, while featuring on Political Circuit, a live interview programme on Fresh F.M. radio station.
“Some foreign powers came and created an empire and gathered a number of nationalities together and gave them a single government. Nigeria is an empire comprising many nationalities. In the history of the world, every empire breaks up and the nationalities remain.
“Historians think that the reason for this is that swallowing nationalities together in the belly of one empire is too much. The empire will suffer indigestion and finally break up. That is a fundamental thing.
“It is not about Nigeria alone. It is a fundamental universal world experience that empires combine many nationalities and rule over them and then the empire breaks up. So, it is to be expected that a country like Nigeria will some day break up,” he said.
Akintoye, who has taught History in universities in Nigeria and the United States and got elected as a senator in the Second Republic, however, gave conditions that could forestall the dismemberment of the country, calling on the Hausa/Fulani hegemonists to give up the attitude that they own Nigeria and must continue to rule it.
“From modern perspective of governance and interrelationships, we can do things that can make Nigeria survive for a long time. Number one, we must get the people who believe that they have the right to conquer and subdue the rest of Nigeria.
“We must ask them to give up, repudiate and stop all of that disaster. They must return to civil relationship among other people of Nigeria. If they continue to act like they own the country, they will only speed up the breaking up of the country. They say Nigeria is theirs, that Allah has given it to them.
“There is no way Nigeria can continue as long as this type of agenda and ambition exists among us. The first thing is to demand of our Fulani brethren that they must repudiate the agenda,” he said.
He described the Yoruba as a “powerful ethnic group” not just in Nigeria but also in the world, disclosing that the Yoruba have the reputation of being the most educated immigrants in the United States.
“A few days ago, I was in Benin Republic and the leaders of the Yoruba there are creating their own chapter of the Yoruba World Congress. As I speak, there is at least one delegate who has travelled to the United States to ginger people there to create their own chapter.
“Very soon, we will be able to hold a world congress of the Yoruba people and the whole world will see that this is different. Some intellectuals are even now telling us that the Yoruba nation and its descendants in the world are in almost every country in the world. Yoruba are usually among the most educated anywhere you find them outside the country,” he added.