On Friday, Peter Obi, the Labour Party’s presidential candidate, received the support of the Igbo Elders Consultative Forum (IECF), also known as Ime-obi Ohanaeze Ndigbo. They referred to Obi as a “true unifier” in their statement.
For the sake of national peace, particularly in the South East, they reaffirmed their request for President Muhammadu Buhari to free Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Independent People of Biafra (IPOB).
Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife, the chairman of the Forum and a former governor of Anambra, told media in Abuja that a presidency under Obi in 2023 will put an end to separatist agitations by various organisations across the nation.
Ezeife said: “We, before now, agreed in the Southern and Middle Belt Forum to call all the candidates from the southeast, interview them and adopt one person. But that has been overtaken by events. If you look at the candidates from A to Z, you find out that there is one from the southeast, which is everybody’s candidate.
“He is the true unifier in Nigeria because he will banish poverty, insecurity, and all the negatives associated with Nigeria. That person is Peter Obi, the person we all will support.”
He said the South East elders were responsible for convincing the Labour Party’s presidential candidate to defect from the PDP in May.
“If you look at the records, you’ll find out that the elders in Abuja worked hard to get him out as a candidate. We forced him to get out of the PDP so that he could be a candidate for president. So the question of even adopting him doesn’t arise as he is our trusted, God-anointed candidate to remake and recreate Nigeria. He will make everybody happy.
“Obi will make Fulani belong to Nigeria and have a say. He will ensure Yoruba don’t want to go and make Igbo and all groups stay in Nigeria and have the country restructured to work,” he stated.
Ezeife forewarned that the general elections scheduled for 2023 would significantly impact Nigeria’s stability, peace, and corporate existence.
“Hence, we appeal to all candidates, other political gladiators and their supporters to observe the rule of the game in their electioneering campaigns.
“INEC should resist the alleged pressure by inordinate and unscrupulous politicians to compromise the provisions of the extant electoral laws and conduct free, fair and credible elections in 2023 for the stability and corporate existence of Nigeria.”