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General News of Saturday, 4 March 2023


Onoh begs Igbos in Lagos to re-elect Sanwo-Olu

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu

The South East Presidential campaign spokesperson of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Dr. Josef Onoh has pleaded with Igbos residing in Lagos to re-elect Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on March 11.

Onoh, in a statement, said that Sanwo-Olu has shown affection and support for the Igbos in Lagos in the past four years and deserves reciprocation from well-meaning Igbos who are good tenants and have over the years shown fidelity in project Lagos State.

He said: “I recall how he helped former super Eagles captain, Henry Nwosu, who was at the point of death and couldn’t get any assistance even from our Igbo brothers, Sanwo-Olu took over Nwosu’s treatment just three hours after being notified, flew him from a hospital in Asaba to LUTH Lagos and went further to build a house for him,” Onoh recalled.

Onoh asked Ndigbo in Lagos to disregard the misleading statements made by a faction of Ohanaeze Ndigbo against the Governor and the Oba of Lagos, noting that his late father, HE Chief C.C Onoh, was one of the major founding fathers of Ohaneze Ndigbo which he remarked is today more political than a socio-cultural organization subjected to divisiveness.

He said: “Lagosians and the Yorubas have been immensely kind to the Igbos. Many famous streets are named after our sons and daughters in lagos but we cannot find as many streets named after a Yoruba man in the south east.

“They have given us a sense of belonging and accommodated our excesses even when we make proclamation that irritates the Yoruba that Lagos is no man’s land, which comes for the most part from my Igbo brothers and sisters, yet In all of these conglomeration of ethnic groups, it is ultimately true that Lagos still remains the centre of cultural melting point where there is high level of ethnic tolerance and great opportunities for the Igbos.”

Onoh stated that irrespective of whatever position one has taken, there are some facts that are sacrosanct and should be linearly preserved.

He noted: “The Yorubas could have their faults, still they have remained Igbo partners in progress even before the Nigeria independence and supported well meaning Igbos in most of their political journeys.

“In 1959 same Yorubas supported my late father to become the first black chairman of the Nigeria coal Corporation with the support of Pa Anthony Enahoro despite Nnamdi Azikwe’s resistance. Till his death, he shared a rare brotherly bond with Akinwole Michael Omoboriowo then Deputy Governor of Ondo State, stood by Abiola, remained committed to NADECO and was one amongst few that were prisoners of conscience during the military onslaught on Nadeco members.

“My father shared great friendship bonds with many Yoruba sons and daughters till death. Dim. Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu spoke Yoruba fluently, Lagos was his home and in his lifetime I always heard him speak worthy of many Yoruba sons and daughters. These are qualities we should currently seek as Igbos and foster unity, peace and love amongst our Yoruba brothers. “

He said that ethnic tolerance and or intolerance in Lagos politics and even daily living amongst the Igbos and Yorubas is such that requires a lot of repetition about how Nigeria is a nation that must always strive for national integration and embrace ethnic tolerance in order to promote unity.

He decried that it is yet still a problem in Lagos state that during elections, ethnic affiliation would increases as political parties strategically position themselves in a bid to gain the upper hand even if it means causing ethnic divide in order to maintain relevance.

“At this point, it is worthy of note that Lagos is that state that gives voice to other ethnic groups in political affairs in Nigeria. It is not done in other states in Nigeria. Ethnic politics and political intolerance always manifest in Political party formation in Nigeria and promoted by the selfish.

“The above successes were made possible because Lagos and Yorubas accommodate people from all spheres of influence which is a major ingredient in fostering national unity. Politics is about interest and not sentiments, it’s only wise that Ndigbo in lagos support Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s re-election because the devil you know is better than the Angel you don’t know.

“Your greatest interest is your businesses in lagos hence it’s wise to vote continuity, don’t be your own executioner and if you fail you carry your cross alone and be assured that your fellow Igbo brother will be the first to laugh at you and non of the presidential candidates that lost the election will speak on your behalf, their families are abroad, they will not lift a finger to stand up for you if you commit political suicide out of sentiments, let’s think interest first,” Onoh advised.

He said that in his interactions with various Igbo trade unions in lagos state, he was made aware that during the past campaigns, there were promises made but weren’t kept four years after.

But Onoh assured that despite the redeemable setbacks, assured that he will personally lead a deligation to meet with Governor Sanwo-Olu once he’s re-elected into office, to press home the demands for a more conducive business-friendly environment and government precence and support for the Igbos in lagos.

“As brothers, all I ask to make this possible is your support and vote for Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on the 11th of March 2023. If he still doesn’t address these promises that were made, provided they are within reason, although I know he will, I’ll personally drive home your demands to our incoming President, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who we all know has so much love and shown great support for Igbos.”