–CALLS FOR TECHNOLOGY VILLAGE FOR SOUTH-EAST
Igbos have been called on to have faith in project Nigeria and work relentlessly for an equitable country where they can optimize their talents and actualize their destiny.
Making the call in London on Saturday, the Senator representing Imo West in the National Assembly, Sen. Hope Uzodinma also called for the establishment of a technology village in the South-east insisting that in a strong united Nigeria Igbos using technology and innovation as their compass can build a secure and prosperous South East where their “abiding worth as equal players and partners in the great Nigeria project will become more unassailable”.
Uzodinma whose speech to Imo West Association UK, was titled, “Imo West, Igbos and Project Nigeria”, said he was confident that using the compass of technology and innovation, Igbos can actualize the grand vision of her foremost political icon, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, who believed that Igbos have the capacity to spread their wings and be the Ndigbo of Africa and beacon of hope for their African brethren.
He traced the history of Igbo enterprise and recalled that they dominated the intellectual and inventive world before and immediately after independence, citing the feats of great Igbo intellectuals such as Prof. Kenneth Dike, first black VC of University of Ibadan; first Nigeria Professor of Mathematics, Prof Chike Obi, who solved Fermat’s last Therorem, first Nigeria professor of anatomy and physiology, Prof. Chike Edozien and current Obi of Asaba, and Prof. Kodilinonye, the first Nigeria Professor of Medicine, among others, to drive his point home.
Recalling that the lost glory of Igbos was resonating in the brilliant outings of Igbo youths, Uzodinma said: “This august, Kimberly Anyadike, a 15 years old girl made history in the US as the youngest female pilot in world history. A little over one month ago, another girl made the best result in the qualifying exams for University admission in the US. Back home in Nigeria, a girl in Aba had the best result in the 2016 West Africa Senoir Secondary School Examinations”
He added: “if we match these staggering achievements of our forbearers, some of which were recorded even before independence, with the resonant inventive ingenuity of the Igbo youths, then you will agree with me that our race has a great future. The improvements of our youths in WAEC Examinations, as evidenced in the 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 performance, all point to this emerging new Igbo spirit of excellence”.
The Senator however pointed out that this unfolding great Igbo future will remain latent unless it is deliberately harnessed and channeled into fruition through political leadership.
To achieve this, Uzodinma who is also Senate committee chairman on Customs and Excise, called on the Igbo political elite to buy into this new Igbo spirit of excellence and chart the way forward for the Igbo race, pointing out that in place of the clamor for separatism, the political elite should encourage Igbos to see and use the opportunity offered by the vast Nigeria land space to “cut a niche for themselves as the technological bedrock of this Nation”
He recommended the establishment of an informal Pan-Igbo parliament, which should meet once every quarter and in liaison with a re-energized Ohamaeze Ndigbo, define a political roadmap for Igbo, explaining that this approach will provide the race with a strong political leadership.
He declared: “The platform should come up with a decision to create a Pan-Igbo technology village. The implementation of this idea should be ensured through State Houses of Assembly appropriation bills”.
At the end of the town-hall meeting, Imo West resident in UK and parts of Europe who were in attendance, through a communiqué, re-affined their faith in project Nigeria passed a vote of confidence on the Senator and urged him to run for a higher office in 2019.