By Laju Arenyeka
With the over 200 kidnapped Chibok girls still missing, and frequent bombings in northern Nigeria, it goes without saying that insecurity is the greatest challenge facing Nigeria today. In the light of this, many have traced the root cause of the insecurity to the opposition parties simply playing politics. National Vice Chairman, South East of the All Progressive Congress, APC, and Abia State gubernatorial aspirant, Dr. Nyerere Anyim, says instead of playing the blame game, Nigerians should come together and bring an end to the current wave of insecurity. He also speaks on the future of Abia and the possibility of an Igbo president.
Members of the PDP, as well as other statesmen have been reported to be clamouring that the next governor of Abia State must come from Abia South. What are your thoughts on this?
It is not important where the next governor is coming from, what is important is the kind of person such individual is. In Abia State, Abia North senatorial zone has produced governor who ruled for eight years, the Abia Central is where the incumbent governor is from and is on the verge of completing his eight years term. Then the Abia South, where you have people who are eminently qualified to govern the state. So it is not a question of playing politics about where the next governor is coming from. Equity demands that Abia North, having taken the shot, Central having taken the shot, it is the turn of Abia South where we have people who are equally qualified to govern the state.
The Abia APC Integrity Group has in the recent past accused you and Chief Ikechi Emenike of trying to factionalize APC in Abia. Can you give some insight as to the issues that prompted this statement?
In as much as I will acknowledge that there are challenges that the APC is facing in Abia, which are challenges that are surmountable, there is nothing like APC Integrity Group in Abia, so whoever is parading himself as belonging to such is not recognized.
What happened is that the issue of Chief Emenike and the issue of factionalisation in Abia APC is something we have to really look at to deduce what is actually happening. Who is Chief Emenike? What does he want in APC?
If you have somebody who comes to an organisation and decides to run a parallel structure within the organisation, the person should be suspected of having a hidden agenda. What I am trying to say is that I am not forming any faction in the APC; I am working with APC genuinely registered members in Abia. So whatever people are saying about faction or no faction, I am not bothered about that. I would rather keep mute on the matter until the APC at the national level decides to say something on the happenings within the party in Abia State.
What do you think can be done to ensure free and fair elections in 2015?
Free and fair election is the best thing that can happen to Nigeria as a nation come 2015. I believe INEC is capable of conducting a free and fair election if they so wish. While we are talking about INEC and free and fair elections, we need to also consider the people themselves. If Nigerians agree that they want the elections to be free and fair, it will so be. They are the electorate, they are the ones to go and vote; it is what they want to happen that will happen. So we don’t keep on calling INEC as if the people will be locked up in their rooms while INEC will produce results. The people for us to beckon on are the Nigerian masses.
Opposition parties have been said to be behind the spate of insecurity in the country, to make the country ungovernable for the ruling PDP. What do have to say in this regard?
I just want to say that it is unfortunate, because our people should be more realistic on issues that have to do with us as a nation. That I am in a different party from my brother does not make him or her my enemy. Look at the bombings; do they kill members of a particular party or religion? Instead of us to come together and see how we can put an end to such ills, all we do is trade blames and propaganda in the name of politics. It wrong and is sheer wickedness to play politics with issues that border around the security, lives and property of our people.
From an objective point of view, would you say that the PDP 15-year rule in Abia has had no positive effect in the state?
If I say for the 15 years they have ruled in Abia, there is nothing they have done, that will not be true; they have tried but what they have done is not good enough.