The presidential aspiration of former president of the senate, Anyim Pius Anyim, got a major boost, yesterday, with an endorsement by a coalition of support groups numbering 85 in Abuja.
The coalition coordinated by the United for Better Nigeria Initiative (UBNi) said it was the turn of the south east geopolitical zone to produce the next president of Nigeria, favouring Anyim amongst the lot that has shown interest so far.
In her remarks at a formal unveiling of the coalition in collaboration with northern and southern coalition groups, the Director General of UBNi, Mrs Nkolika Mkparu-Okeke, said Anyim was qualified to become president on the account of his meritorious service to the nation.
According to her, in all fairness, the south east should be given a chance at the Presidency.
“We worked judiciously to select the best candidate. We have many candidates from South-East, Nigeria. We have good candidates across the nation. What we are asking the country to do is support in electing a president of South-East extraction for inclusiveness, and fairness. It is morally right. We are not claiming that it must be given but we say it is about time we get people in the South-East inclusive in the affairs of the nation,” he said.
“The South-East has served the country in different capacities and they have delivered effectively. All those looking for presidency are qualified but UBNI is looking for the most qualified, who would cut across the nation. Who would understand what you and I feel. Who understands that we need everyone to advance any country.
“We are here to endorse him. We have 84 other groups to ensure this aim is achieved. We are calling on all Nigerians to join us in making it come true for the benefit of the country. Please all should endeavour to get their voters card. 2023 would be like no other. It would need tenacity and audacity to make it work.”
“He would fix the country’s problem. Nigerians are doing well in other parts of the world. Why are we not doing this in the country. We need good leadership to appreciate the strength of Nigeria. We are strong and diversified. We have our strength in our diversity. We need to come together.”
“He is experienced for the job having being senate president and SGF among other responsibilities. He is prepared with experience and hit the ground running. He has the temperament. We need someone that would unite the country. This is the beginning of a new Nigeria.”
Also speaking for the coalition of northern supporters, Alhaji Shehu Suleman urged other Nigerians to support the south east zone.
“We also stand with the south east because we have seen democratically elected presidents from the north and west, but we are yet to have one from the south-east, which are the three main ethnic groups in Nigeria. Justifiably and non negotiable, we need to see leadership from south east as well. Peace, justice and progress can never be attained without justifiable and rotational leadership. What are we afraid of? Are they not Nigerians? God created man in his own image. We are all one before God and must work together for the growth of the country,” he said.
In his remarks, the leader of support groups from the South, Dr Kayode Odeyemi said Anyim was the most prepared for the top job.
“We will support him. Let us give him support. This is the right time for the SE. He has what it takes to solve the problems facing the country,” he said.