BY CLIFFORD NDUJIHE
LAGOS — AHEAD of the 2015 presidential election, Igbo youths have vowed not back President Goodluck Jonathan’s re-election bid unless he fulfills his 2011 campaign promises to the South-East geo-political zone.
According to the youths, of 10 promises, the President as of now is only tackling one and appears bent on shifting the rest to his second term, which they said was not fair.
In a chat with Vanguard, Evang Elliot Uko, President of Igbo Youth Movement, IYM, an amalgam of 42 Igbo youth groups, said Jonathan had not really appreciated the massive support Ndigbo gave him in 2011.
His words: “We expected massive industrial and infrastructural development. We are not seeing that. We thought he would keep his promises. From the way things are going, it is clear that only the Enugu International Airport could materialize before 2015.
“He promised us at Enugu Stadium, at Imo, Ebonyi, Abia and Anambra campaign rallies, 29 months ago, that we would see a functional seaport at Onitsha and Oguta, power plant at Oji River, dry inland port at Aba, second Niger bridge, re-work on the Enugu-Onitsha road, Enugu-Port Harcourt road, etc. But we suspect he wants to shift all these to his second term; that is not fair.”
We want him to establish a South-East office in his office and review weekly the fulfillment of his promises to Ndigbo if he wants a second term. He will have problems with his second term dream if he does not fulfill all the infrastructural promises he made to Ndigbo. That is the truth.
“We gave him 100 per cent support in 2011; we will only repeat that, if he fulfills all his infrastructural promises to the South East. He is our man but he must not take Ndigbo for granted. We are on ground and we know the grumbling of our people.
We believe we are doing him a big favour by giving him early warning signal. Ndigbo are not happy with the delay tactics of shifting every thing to his second term.
Those telling him that Ndigbo are dead meat are only deceiving him. We want him to fulfill his promises to Ndigbo. We plead with him to watch again the video of his campaign rally at Nnamdi Azikiwe Stadium in March 2011 and remember all the promises he reeled out one by one. Our people are waiting expectantly.
“Ndigbo paid a heavy price for supporting him. Igbo votes saw him through and gave him the needed 25 per cent in 24 states thereby averting a run-off.
In anger over 800 Igbo souls were slaughtered as the results of the polls were announced, only the 10 youth corpers were compensated, nobody remembers the 800 Igbo lives lost in gruesome decapitations in Kano, Bauchi, etc in April 2011.We made him President, we will do it again, if he endeavors to fulfill his promises to our people.
“We also want him to hand over power to an Igboman. He should reciprocate our massive support. It is only fair he does. We also want him to protect lives and properties of Nigerians resident in the North. We note an improvement and pray that sanity eventually returns to the North.
We also want him to set up a committee to work out the modalities for the convening of a National conference to restructure Nigeria along the lines of true federalism. Promises made in 2011 must be kept before talk of second term.”