By Dapo Akinrefon
The Ohanaeze Ndigbo General Assembly Worldwide, on Thursday, said it is yet to throw it’s weight behind any Presidential Candidate for the election just as it urged Igbo people to vote for their preferred candidate.
In a statement by its Director-General, Strategic Planning and Implementations, Ambassador Tony Obizoba, the group noted that it has not endorsed the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, LP, Mr Peter Obi noting that the Igbo cannot exist in isolation of others.
The statement reads: “Our attention has been drawn to a report in circulation suggesting that the Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has endorsed the Presidential Candidate of Labour Party (LP), Dr. Peter Obi, as preferred candidate of the Igbo people of Nigeria.
“As the established umbrella body recognised by law to speak for the Igbo ethnic group in the country, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo General Assembly Worldwide, hereby states that – as far as the authenticity of Igbo voice is concerned – no one among the presidential contestants has been endorsed by it.
“This is because there is no way the Igbo people can enter into federal election of this nature on the basis of tribal or religious sentiment.
“This has always been our watchword that in Nigeria, a multi-ethnic and multi-religious country, the Igbo cannot exist in isolation of others.
“To this end, since we cannot afford to take action that will be injurious to the collective interest of South East person anywhere in the country, we urge all the Igbo people home and abroad to note that our resolve on peace and development based on unity of Nigeria is sacrosanct.
“We have Igbo across all the contending parties and cannot afford to take the partisan path. We cannot, we repeat. And, to us, it has always been Nigeria First. Nigeria First. That has not changed. We stand, on this election, to be for nobody but for everybody.
“Every Igbo eligible voter should therefore keep his or her Permanent Voter’s Card (PVC) intact without allowing anybody to buy it off him or her and then, on February 25, 2023, go ahead and vote for Presidential Candidate of his or her choice.”
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