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Restructuring for Nigeria: From an Igbo Man’s Perspective.

By Francis Olisemeka Okoroafor

The Atiku Abubakar we know is better than the candidate whose mind on national issues is hidden.

When president Buhari came to power in 2015, I celebrated like he was my father. I had so much faith and hope in this Messianic persona that was sold to us. He was celebrated as the man of highest integrity who would do what is best for Nigeria and Nigerians, among other things.

Little was known about his personal stance on critical issues (aside corruption), but what was said on his behalf by his promoters. The first time we heard from him was his inaugural speech of I am for nobody and nobody is for me. And that is exactly how it has been for the past 3.5 years. Our leadership has not made a single stand on any single issue and allowed everybody and all the nobodies to direct the course of this country. When asked, the president’s constant answer is “I didn’t know”.

Finally, we have a candidate that knows. His name is Atiku Abubakar. There is somebody whose stance on critical national issues is well known at home and abroad. His name is Atiku Abubakar. There is someone whose love for the North, East, South and West of Nigeria is clear and unequivocal, his name is Atiku Abubakar.

As an Igbo man, I hear clearly what Atiku Abubakar is saying. Not just for the Igbos, but for the whole country.

The 2019 chair for the South East.

Atiku Abubakar is the ONLY one who has said on record and unequivocally, he will serve for one term and one term only. He is the only man who has promised a SE Vice President to prepare for succession. He is the ONLY candidate who has our interest in his agenda.

Orji Kalu said had while speaking during a recent TV interview “After Buhari’s eight years, nobody in Nigeria can tell us that our region cannot produce the president. Majority of the Igbo will massively support Buhari in 2019. They did not support him in 2015. But in 2019, they will massively vote for him. APC has come to stay in the South-East. Buhari contesting in 2019 is not only for himself but also for the south-east.”

Your Excellence Orji Kalu, I respectfully say SPEAK FOR YOURSELF. As His Excellency is so informed on national ‘pot’ issues, can he list 5 things that Buhari has done in the interest of the South East since 2015?

For years, Atiku Abubakar has sang the song and preached the sermon on national unity. Let us go down memory lane. When have the igbos ever had prominence in Nigeria? 1999-2007, as Atiku Abubakar had in his cabinet and political appointees equality of ethnicity.

Let us go away from ethnicity, what is Atiku Abubakar promising Nigerians with this “Restructuring for Unity” campaign? The joint benefit is limitless. In my limited knowledge as an educated igbo trader, I will pick on 3 things.

States and Regions must be recognized for their contributions. Without offending any sensitivities, he is one among is kiln that believes that this issue of federal this federal that has not helped this country in many ways. When everything is centralized and shared from a common pot, whether you contributed or not, fosters laziness, mediocrity and retardation. It is common understanding that only a handful of states contribute over 90% to the federation account, including the oil producing states.

This issue of monkey dey work baboon dey chop has to end. We have to make the baboon realize that if he also works, he will get even more than he is chopping right now. If each state’s money resides in the state, the taxes of the state reside in the state, the people will begin to hold their governors accountable and the governors will no longer have the excuse of passing the buck to the FG. Atiku Abubakar has promised to offer a matching grant of $250 million each to the 36 states of the federation to challenge them to enhance their Internally Generated Revenue, IGR

Niger Delta Agitation. Most people don’t mind living on meagre resources. As long as it is earned and fairly allocated. What people do not like is cheating. Has anybody paid a visit to the oil producing region of Nigeria recently? You will cry!!!! AA believes the Delta deserves more than they are getting right now. AA believes the Delta should be competing with Houston, Texas; Dubai UAE and many other developed cities in the world, based on the sheer amount of dollars generated from the region every single day. With restructuring, the Niger delta region is awarded the right level of recognition for their land’s contribution to national development. If the delta is developed, peace will reign. AA has declared his intention to ensure that the Delta attains its right level of development in this country.

State and Regional Police: Please tell me, how can the policeman Chidi, who has just been redeployed to Ilaramokin (a small town in Ondo State) gather any intelligence around him, even if a major armed robbery is being planned in his parlor by people speaking in their local ilaramokin dialect? The argument for state policing far outweighs the counter argument of ‘the political elites will use the state police for their personal ambitions’ I think that is lame. What if they don’t?

AA understands what Apostle Paul said in Romans 12: 6-12 and Ephesians 4:11-12. Nigeria is a vast country with many blessings and resources. The North, South, West , East all have their resources. How many countries can boast of this? Atiku is guaranteeing us equal opportunities at State level.

As a father, if I can afford it, I will send all my children to school so that they all have an equal chance to make it in life. I will not say let one person be working while the others are sleeping and eating at home. No! I will share the talents 1, 5, and 10 and expect all of them to be like the good and faithful servant who multiplied them to the glory of the Lord.

My igbo brothers and sisters, let us support Atiku Abubakar for President. Let us stop focusing on one national Northern pot, and let us all put our hands to the plough and look inwards, and work hard to earn our keep.

Atiku Abubakar is canvassing for unity, for equality, for the good of everyone, most especially I trust him to deliver a South East President in 2023. I trust him to have the national interest of everyone, igbos inclusive at the core of his agenda. I trust him when he says “ONE TERM ONLY”. I trust him to run for office with my Igbo brother or sister. I trust him because HE KNOWS as opposed to our “I didn’t know’ president. For this and other reasons, I support Atiku Abubakar for 2019.

Igbo kwenu, who will you support?

Francis Olisemeka Okoroafor (PhD), wrote in from Lagos, Nigeria.

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