As the November 18 governorship election in Anambra State draws near, a Board of Trustee (BoT) member of the All progressives Grand Alliance (AGPA), Mazi Okey Kanu, has given reason incumbent governor, Chief Willie Obiano, should be reelected.
Kanu also said by voting for Obiano and APGA, a strongly ideology of the Igbo political cohesion would have been established.
In this interview, he spoke on the achievements of Obiano, the Igbo politics and others.
How does APGA fit in the politics of today’s Nigeria?
From the standpoint of an Igbo man, we must have an umbrella, a political position. It is important to understand that if we do not have a political position, we are not going anywhere. APGA offers that position.
What about the issue of having an Igbo as president of Nigeria?
In fact, we should all forget the so-called Igbo presidency, because the way Nigeria is structured, no one ethnic group can rule Nigeria without a political alliance with other ethnic groups. It used to be like this in the days of NCNC having political alliance with NPC, the days of NPP with NPN, that was why somebody like Edwin Ume-Ezeoke was the speaker of the House of Reps because of the political alliance of NPP and NPN.
As you can see, the way things are structured, no one ethnic group can do it alone; so if any other ethnic group wants to have political alliance with the Igbo, where do they go? That is where the relevance of APGA comes in.
What differentiates Anambra governor, Obiano, from his predecessors?
First of all, he is doing well. I’m not from Anambra, I’m from Imo, but I have seen a lot of progress. I have seen well-maintained roads and so many other basic infrastructure built in Anambra. Governor Obiano has done well, I think in the whole of South-East, there is no where you have the type of networks of roads built and maintained by Obiano.
You’ll remember that he was adjudged as the best governor in Nigeria. Obiano has been commended by even people from the opposing political parties.
You and some APGA board of trustees members had a meeting with the US chapter of the party last year in Boston. Could you tell us what the meeting was all about?
We were thinking that we should have an active APGA USA. We want to re-activate APGA USA; we talked about the way to achieve that. It was the reason we went to Boston. And the talk is still going on. We are still thinking of what to do to make sure that we are still active as we should be. We should even take the leadership of Diaspora politicians in APGA. We are still working on it.
It looks like Igbo are not getting a fair and deserving share of appointments and major infrastructure under Buhari. What is the position of APGA to this great anomaly?
First of all, we are going to start by going from the known to the unknown. We are going to start with Governor Willie Obiano by reelecting him. He has done well; let us all eulogise him so that he can do more, and other people will try to emulate him; that is the number one thing that APGA will do. Let us re-elect him to show that ‘iheoma na adi anyi mma’ to show that we appreciate a good work, and that we are expecting our governors to always work for us.
Secondly, the Igbo must try this time to have a political cohesion. ‘A ga anyukota mmamiri onu ogba ufufu’ meaning that we must have synergy, we must have all the South-East governors under one political umbrella to start with. If need be, we can go into political alliances with other ethnic groups like it used to be in the past. I think I have made it as clear as possible.
What are APGA’s position in terms of restructuring and the agitation by IPOB for Biafra?
The youths are crying because of unemployment; if you give the youths employment, they are not going to be talking about IPOB. What they are crying for is ‘give us what to do’ and I believe it is the unemployment issue that is making them to play the active role as the latest advocates for Biafra. We have to restructure Nigeria, so that justice and fair play will prevail. The only thing that lasts forever is the truth. Every other thing is a question of time, before they crumble. So we cannot continue to run Nigeria the way it is now.
It’s so lopsided; we need to re-structure Nigeria; we have to look at the economy very seriously. We have to start putting round pegs in round holes, and square pegs in square holes. The situation where we put round pegs in square holes will no longer work. And it has never been working for Nigeria. In fact, we are no longer talking about the economy; we are no longer talking about meritocracy; we are now talking about where people are from; we are now talking about ethnicity; that is not how to run our economy in the 21st century. Things never work that way. We need to give the people jobs they are capable of doing, jobs they can do, so that we can run the economy well. The world has become a global village; we are now competing with every other country in the world; that is why we have to re-structure Nigeria to put round pegs in their appropriate round holes.