ABUJAâ€”THEÂ Director of Mobilization of Law and Due Process Institute, Dr. Gbubemi Okpoko, has cautioned youth bodies in the South-East geopolitical zone to resist the temptation of being used by self-serving politicians to cause animosity between the Igbo and the Niger Delta in order to execute the much touted Igbo Presidency in 2015.
Dr. Okpoko was reacting to a recent media publication by a group from the South East, under the leadership of Mr. Nnonyelum Offoma of the Southern Youths Alliance which asked the Vice President to resign over the Niger Delta crisis, alleging that the Southâ€™s chances of clinching the Presidency in 2015 was under threat as a result of militancy in the Niger Delta.
Okpoko stated that â€œwe understand that this group of people and their sponsors decided to take a stake on the mirage from a gaffe by the Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, Dr. Bello Haliru Mohammed, a few weeks ago to the effect that the party has zoned the 2015 Presidency to the Igboâ€.
According to Okpoko, â€œwe urge the leaders of Igboland to call Nnoyelum Offoma and his uninformed group to order and not to desecrate the long standing relationship between the South East and the South-South by their unguarded and inflammatory statements in the media.
â€œThe person and office of Vice President, Goodluck Jonathan should be respected and must never be used as a platform to pursue the vain ambition of Igbo Presidency in 2015â€.
He disclosed that youth groups in the Niger Delta will not hesitate to react if the Igbo group continued in its track towards instigating inter-ethnic conflict.
Adding that â€œthe attacks on the Vice President are unwarranted and they can only lead to acrimony between the South East and South-South.
â€œDr. Jonathan is still serving on the first leg of his mandate; it is, therefore, absurd for any individual or group to start thinking of 2015 at this time. Besides, the Vice President has not told anyone that he is interested in 2015 Presidency.
â€œWhile it could be said that individualâ€™s right to seek any elective office remain sacrosanct, the Vice President must not be maligned neither his name dragged into any projectâ€.
Okpoko regretted that a few rascals could decide to throw caution overboard to embark on an uncharitable and diversionary mission to seek power at the detriment of the existing relationship between the South-East and the South-South.
â€œWe have been living harmoniously with the Igbos so far, but people with inordinate quest for power are planning to cause trouble. We however acknowledge a number of respectable and enterprising Igbo youths in various walks of life,â€ he said
Okpoko cautioned that â€œsooner than later, we will expose these traitors for who they areâ€.