Ohanaeze Youth Council (OYC), has called on former vice-president and Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar to run for just one term if he wants the support of Igbos during the 2019 general elections.
The youths made this known on Tuesday in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Mazi Okwu Nnabuike.
Why insisting on one tenure?
According to the group, Atiku’s six years master plan is suspicious and may be a strategy employed by the PDP candidate to go for a second tenure.
Also it was argued that the Presidency slot is meant for south east in 2023 and Atiku may not garner any votes from Igbos if he refuses to agree to one term.
The party said, “OYC had studied dilligently the Six Year plan of Atiku Abubakar policy to make Nigeria work again as a good document but insists that Atiku must make a categorical Statement that he will only seek for one tenure to convince Ndigbo that his Six Year Policy Statement is not intention of seeking second term against 2023 Igbo Presidency Project” OYC said.
Ohaneze’s advise to Igbos
The group called on the people of the south-east geopolitical zone to remain united prior to next year’s general election. Members also warned against a repeat of the scenario that happened in 2003 election in south west where the opposition governors under the Alliance for Democracy, agreed to Vote for Obasanjo but eventually lost their seats.
On this premise, the Ohaneze Youths threatened to vote out any Governor in south east who betray Igbo course.
“As Igbo Watchdogs, we believe that irrespective of Our Support for South East Governors seeking 2nd term, we will vote out any Governor who betrayed the Igbo interest and Agenda which will be decided by January 2019, We call agitators to join hands for we to retire some Igbo politicians who had consistently betray our collective interest because of our apathy towards voting
“OYC insists that South East and Igbo votes across the 36 States including Abuja will be the swinging votes that will help who will emerge victorious in the 2019 Presidential election, and major contenders know about this reality,” the statement read.
Is Atiku planning to run for one term?
In August 2018, during an interview with THISDAY, Atiku said if elected president, he would sign an undertaking to serve for just a term. He said his case would not be like President Muhammadu Buhari who allegedly reneged on his promise to serve for one term.
“If I am elected as the president in 2019, I give an undertaking that I would only do one term,
“I am willing to sign a written document. If you or any other Nigerian can come up with an iron-clad legal document that binds me, I am willing to publicly commit to it,” he said.
With the recent development from the Igbo group, Atiku may need to go further than choosing an Igbo as vice- president but also ensure his pledge for one term stands so as to gain the unflinching support of the Igbos in the forthcoming elections.