Ahead of tomorrow’s election of the apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Ndigbo have been urged to go for good candidates, who will reposition the organisation for the onerous tasks before it in the country.
The charge was made by elder statesman and former Secretary General of Ohanaeze, Professor Ben Nwabueze, SAN, and National Chairman of the United Progressives Party, UPP, Chief Chekwas Okorie. Prof. Ben Nwabueze The duo spoke, yesterday, while rooting for different candidates, who are running for the post of the president-general. While Professor Nwabueze is backing Professor Chiweyite Ejike, Chief Okorie is supporting Chief Nnia Nwodo for the prime slot.
In a reference letter he wrote for Ejike, a professor of Zoology and current chairman of the Convention for Intellectual Co-operation of Nigeria, COFICON, Nwabueze said: “At a time when Ohanaeze, the umbrella organisation for Ndigbo, is in shambles, and in some kind of disarray inflicted on it by lapses on the part of the leadership in recent years, we need someone of great integrity, impeccable character, outstanding sagacity and intellect, principled and disciplined, someone imbued with a passion and a vision for the promotion of the interest of Ndigbo, especially in the context of Nigeria. Professor C. Ejike seems to me to be such a person.
He possesses, in an eminent degree, the qualities mentioned above.” Warning against imposition of candidates, Nwabueze added: ‘’The forthcoming election provides an opportunity to revitalize Ohanaeze, to inject into it the spirit, vision and dream that animated its founding some 40 years ago, and to create, as it were, a new Ohanaeze Ndigbo.”
In like manner, Chief Okorie said he was backing Nwodo to be elected in the interest of Ndigbo because “Ndigbo are at crossroads in Nigeria today. The Ohanaeze leadership we must elect at this time cannot be somebody who has just chanced on the pan-Igbo organisation.”
“I make this recommendation with every sense of responsibility and patriotism. Chief Nnia Nwodo towers head and shoulder above those who have stepped forward to contest for the office of President General of Ohanaeze in terms of commitment and personal sacrifice to the course of the apex Igbo socio cultural organisation, consistently for several years. The Ohanaeze profile of Chief Nnia Nwodo is unassailable.”