Monday, March 8, 2021 10:36 pm
The agitations for Nigerians of the Southeast extraction to become president in 2023 cannot be meaningful until the country is restructured.
Former Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Chief Dubem Onyia made the declaration on Monday in Enugu at the inauguration of Atiku for Nigeria, a group rooting for the presidency of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.
The Enugu State-born politician stated that the issue of the Nigerian presidency is currently beyond the ethnic question, but about the leadership that can take initiatives and introduce innovations that can change the structure of the country with needed executive powers.
“I am Igbo and I want the Igbo people to become president, I can, however, tell you that unless Nigeria is restructured to give governance ownership to the people which only Atiku Abubakar will do, an Igbo presidency will have no meaning.
“The National Assembly has more Northerners than the rest, so, it will require that leverage from a nationally acceptable president like Atiku to restructure Nigeria, to empower the youths and the Nigerian women.
“We must not miss this opportunity. This is not about Atiku; it is about all of us; it is about the youths, the Nigerian women and the future of this country. Atiku doesn’t have to be president again, but we are all begging him to offer himself again in the interest of this country, and he has accepted to lead Nigeria to the land of promise,” Onyia stressed.
Flagging off the organisation, Chairman of the occasion, Dr. Nat Yadume, who is a long-time associate of Waziri Adamawa, in his remark reminded that only young people have energy and drive for the development of Nigeria.
“Those who are here are mostly the political followers of Atiku Abubakar; people who believe so much in him and have always expressed satisfaction with his leadership. And I am happy that members of the movement have evolved to holding political offices, like the serving Zamfara State Commissioner who is physically present at the inauguration.
“Atiku is just one man that if not given the support, will not realise the opportunity to impact our lives so, we must give him our maximum support.
“There are a lot of people that will discourage us, but if we put our acts together, we can realise our potentials and deliver together,” Yadume said.
He commended the Chairman, Governing Council of the AFN, Amb. Aliyu Bin Abbas for remaining consistent in the cause of advancing the Atiku project.
In his goodwill address, Hon. Oladimeji Fabiyi, another aide of ex-VP expressed gladness for witnessing the official birth of Atiku for Nigeria.
“You have not made a wrong choice by following Atiku so we have to continue working together to realise the set mandate. We must promote untiy and be prepared to work together,” Fabiyi said.
Highlight of the event was the official inauguration of Atiku for Nigeria by the Chairman, Governing Council of the organisation, Ambassador Aliyu Bin Abbas.
Abbas who went the memory lane on the background to the formation of the AFN urged members of the movement to give maximum support to the Sunday Umeha-led leadership.
While accepting the new assignment, the newly inaugurated Director-General of the Atiku for Nigeria, Barr. Sunday Umeha pledged not to betray the worthy trust reposed in him.
“We been the given the mandate and I have no doubt that with people like you, we will get to the expected destination.
“This assignment has given me the impetus to work harder and in the coming week, I look forward to working with the Governing Council closely to chart a way forward for this movement.
“The Atiku for Nigeria project is one on national rebirth and reconstruction towards a Nigeria that works for all. The reason is by no means far-fetched; the leadership has been weakest link on our journey through nationhood. Unfortunately, while this fact has all too been acknowledged and theorized by keen observers of the Nigerian state, we have somehow continued to repeat the mistakes of the past, while expecting a different outcome.
“Nation building is a collective effort. Thus, achieving the Nigeria of our dreams must be achied together,” Umeha restated.
Officials that were inaugurated include the Director-General, Barr. Sunday Umeha; his Deputy, the Commissioner of Science and Technology, Zamfara State, Hon. Zanna Lawal; Assistant DG, Hon. Oludare Olatunde; Secretary of the organization, Hon. Meshach Onyeche and Director of Research and Planning, Amb. Golkuna Yohanna Gotom.
Dignitaries that graced the occasion include the Senior Special Adviser to Abbas on Foreign Affairs and Human Relations, Collins Onyeaji; Mr. Remi Adebayo as well as Hon. Adekunle Ayobami, Pastor Dene Abel, Mr. Veadams Ighodalo and Hon. Samuel Egboja representing Oyo, Rivers, Benue, Edo and Abia states.