Former governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu has expressed absolute confidence on the ability of APC leader, Bola Ahmed Tinubu to amicably reconcile all feuding members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) party.
Worried by the lingering issues in the party Kalu said he had already reported the matter to the highest levels of his party and the government, adding that a situation where a governor and a minister is going on two parallel ways does not augur well.
The former governor who gave the advice yesterday on arrival from Abuja to the Murtala Mohammed Airport 2 (MMA2) also pointed out that the crisis is not for the benefit of the President, neither is it for the benefit of the party nor for the benefit of the Nigerian people.
Commending President Buhari, Kalu said “I want to thank Mr. President for his wisdom to have given the national leader of APC the opportunity to reconcile them. I am very excited for what is happening because that is what democracy is all about. I felt that it will be a good beginning and I hope my brother and friend, Alhaji Bola Tinubu will be able to do this job very well. He is capable of doing it”.
On 2019 general elections, Kalu said that Buhari is prepared to run. He however pointed out that, Buhari being an honest man will not like to pretend about his ambition.
He said “He is an honest man. I am sure you know Buhari very well. He is not a man that pretends; neither is he a man that shows the other side of his behavior. If he is not going to run, he will tell Nigerians. If he will run, he will tell Nigerians that he will run. He is an honest man. We pray that his health get better. We also pray that his doctor gives him a clear health bill. And you know Buhari is a man with a lot of conscience. If he feels that his health will not allow him to run for this election, he is not going to run. But if he feels he is capable of running, he will run for the election”.
According to him, Buhari has done well and therefore is entitled for a second term; besides, contesting for the position, Kalu said is entirely his right
Confirming that the Igbos have been cheated in many ways, he advised Nigerians to take this era as time for a new beginning, adding “I know also we have been cheated in many ways but this is a new beginning. They have been cheating us since 1960 up till today, so the issue is that we must build a national cohesion”.
“What is lacking in Nigeria is inability to build national cohesion by all stakeholders. We are still building a tribal cohesion where people remember where they come from. Where people think where they are from; where people think about their religion. We must be able to embrace a situation where all stakeholders know that they are Nigerians. Like I know, I feel am a Nigerian and I feel at home anywhere I go. If am in Lagos, I fell at home; in Sokoto, I feel at home; in Enugu, I also feel at home. If I go to Ibadan, it is home for me. So I believe the earlier we know we are Nigerians, the better for us”, Kalu said
Although Kalu concurred that Igbo presidency can wait till 2023. He however warned that “Let us stop blackmailing ourselves and work. An Igbo presidency will bring prosperity to Nigeria because Igbos are the closest people who can go to Ogbomosho and start building houses, Igbos are the closest people who go to Birnin Kebbi and establish their shops and the next thing, they will build houses there. It is a thing that the country should do with joy. It is also a thing that we should do with pride. The country should be proud to showcase an Igbo man”.
Kalu equally noted that if the Northern elites fail to support Buhari, the masses will support Buhari, adding that the masses are more in number.
“The people that are going to support Buhari are people who actually and sincerely believe in Buhari. They are people who don’t even know any other thing than Buhari. Let’s assume that we have 12.5 million supporters before. I am sure 10 million are still in the bank; we call it bazaar reserve. That reserve is still there. We will bring it out at the appropriate time”, Kalu said.
He said that State police is essential for the growth of democracy in the country, if it is managed very well.
“State policing is what I called since 1999. That was after three months I was elected as governor. I said there was a need for state policing and I was the first governor in Nigeria who supported state policing. Having been governor for three months, that is precisely September, 1999. I said there was need for state policing and that was the only way to stop armed robbery. When we were in Abia, we were able to stop armed robbery operations because we had collaboration with the Bakassi and police. We have the federal police like the FBI so that they can handle all the serious issues while the state police will handle local issues”, Kalu said.
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