YOUTHS under the auspices of the South East Youth Vanguard yesterday described calls by former President Olusegun Obasanjo for an Igbo president in 2019 as mischievous and an act of double standard, accusing him of being the one who frustrated the emergence of an Igbo president in 2003.
In a statement signed by the National Coordinator, Jason Njoku and made available to newsmen in Abuja, the Igbo youths said Chief Obasanjo’s remark is capable of causing tension, ill-will and confusion in the country The group said the call by the former President would have been seen as the act of a friend, benefactor and statesman if the former President had dealt well with Ndigbo when he was the President for eight years.
According to them, the former President ignored a gentleman’s understanding of the then ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP), to do one term of four years and instead took two terms, adding that by insisting on a second term, Obasanjo instituted the two-term culture, which they claimed jeopardised the chance of the Southeast and other zones in the country to get the Presidency at an earlier date.
The group recalled that then President Obasanjo also wanted and worked hard to take a third shot at the Presidency but was stopped by well-meaning Nigerians. Speaking further, the youths said that while the Southeast looks forward to a shot at the Presidency, it is mindful of the fact that there is a zoning formula and understanding in place, adding that the zone is ready to wait for the time when the zoning arrangement would inevitably beckon on the Southeast.
“Therefore, based on the above democratic and patriotic calculations, we of the South East Youth Vanguard, hereby reject the suspicious and patronising declaration of support by Chief Obasanjo for a President from the Southeast come 2019. “Granted that the state of the nation today clearly makes the 2019 Presidency an important issue, the Southeast, however, would not want to be used as a pawn in former President Obasanjo’s many self-serving political schemes.”