The leadership of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) yesterday expressed support for President Muhammadu Buhari decision to seek re-election in the coming 2019 general election, describing it as a welcome development.
On the other hand, a Northern youth group, Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYC), yesterday expressed its opposition to the president’s re-election ambition, saying its members had lost confidence in the president’s ability to take the country forward.
The Ayewa youth group said President Buhari had bowed to pressure to re-contest in 2019 presidential poll against the group’s advice, adding that its members would begin to shop for another candidate to support in 2019 presidential election.
IPOB’s spokesman, Comrade Emma Powerful, who released a statement for the group yesterday in Awka, the Anambra State capital, said President Buhari’s re-election would hasten the realisation of the agitation for biafra.
He, therefore, urged all “freedom fighters” in the country to remain steadfast in their struggle.
The IPOB statement reads: “The leadership and family members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) worldwide view the decision of the bearer and custodian of the name Muhammadu Buhari to seek re-election in 2019 as a welcome development. We have always maintained that the rebirth of Biafra will happen under Buhari or under whoever is answering to his name.
“This second coming of Buhari portends goodwill for freedom lovers because God Almighty wants to fulfil his divine purpose in the life of Biafrans in 2019 as foretold by our leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, many years ago.
“No doubt, we have lost a lot of people under the brutality of this terror APC regime. We also have many innocent citizens in prison and detention facilities across Nigeria with countless miscarriages of justice in the law courts, but we remain undeterred, focused and determined, because, like Israelites in Egypt, Jews in Europe and Germany, blacks in apartheid South Africa, no amount of tribulation will stop us from emerging victorious as a free people at the end of this process.
“We urge our brethren in the Middle Belt and Western Nigeria not to give up or capitulate in this our collective quest to free our people from the shackles of caliphate domination and creeping Islamisation.”
The separatist group, which was proscribed and tagged a terrorist organisation last year by the federal government, vowed to continue its struggle for recognition.
“At IPOB we are continuing the intensification of our global campaign to peacefully bring the existence of this disastrous colonial experiment called Nigeria to an end, in order that millions of innocent lives may be saved.
“We are advising Biafrans and other ethnic nationalities in Nigeria seeking to be free from this contraption created by Fredrick Lugsard, the British mercenary, to remain mentally strong and resolute for what is about to come will test our collective resolve,” he said.
On his part, AYC president, Alhaji Yerima Shettima, declared that the group would not support President Buhari’s re-election bid.
Shettima told our correspondent on telephone in Kaduna that northern youths had advised President Buhari not to stand for re-election and to join the nation’s statesmen club but that he ignored their advice.
He said, “For us, President Buhari’s declaration to re-contest in 2019 is not news because his body language had shown long ago that he is desperate to contest again.
“We advised him before not to contest but governors, ministers and others have pressurised him to contest and he bowed to them, although President Buhari has the right to contest and Nigerians too have the right to vote him or not, as he declared to re-contest, we, Arewa Youths, will look for an alternative because we have lost confidence in Buhari’s government.”
His 2nd Term, Igbo’s Shortest Route To Presidency – SGF
Secretary to the government of the federation, Boss Mustapha, has restated that the shortest and surest way for a Nigerian of Igbo extraction to become president is for President Muhammadu Buhari to be re-elected in 2019.
The SGF made this comment yesterday while receiving members of All Progressives Congress (APC), Ebonyi State chapter who paid him a courtesy visit in Abuja.
He remarked that a president could only emerge through negotiation and urged the people of the South East to ensure they come to the negotiation table well prepared.
“Preach it to the other South East states that the shortest way to Igbo Presidency is to support Buhari in 2019. Position yourself so that you will come to the negotiating table from the point of strength. The outcome of 2019 elections will determine that,” he said.
Stating that it was his desire that Buhari wins the 2019 elections in the entire South East, Mustapha added that with their support, the party can capture the whole of the region in the forthcoming elections.
He also called on members of the APC to have a large heart and accommodate new members from all walks of life.
“With President Buhari’s declaration to run for 2019 elections, there are several people that are knocking and it is high time we open our doors and allow them to come in. This is the time to open your arms and your doors to even those that are perceived as enemies; you must have a large heart to receive them.
“That’s why Mr. President himself specifically directed the party to consider the provisions of waiver as provided for in our constitution. Why is he saying that? It is because in this game there are no permanent enemies or friends.
“The dynamics of politics can change and people that you perceive today are not with you, will be with you tomorrow. So your ability to receive them with grace will determine whether they will feel welcomed or isolated,” he added.
The chairman of APC in Ebonyi State, Dr Eze Nwachukwu, who led the delegation, called on the SGF to support the APC in the state in its governorship race, stating that lack of funds was a major constraint to winning elections.
“Lack of fund is the greatest obstacle to APC becoming governor in the next election (in Ebonyi State). We want your support on this.
“The prompt release of board members is laudable and we thank you for our state’s indigenes that were included and we want more to be included,” Nwachukwu said.
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