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CONFAB List Tears Professor Nwabueze, Ohaneze Apart

Ignatius Okpara, Enugu

Unlike other ethnic nationalities and zones in Nigeria that are busy articulating their common positions ahead of the proposed National conference, the   Leadership of Ndigbo is now in a serious crisis as two Igbo groups are now agitating for recognition in the CONFAB.

Prof. Nwabueze Heads Committee to Articulate Common Position for Ndigbo

Prof. Nwabueze Heads Committee to Articulate Common Position for Ndigbo

The two groups includes the apex Igbo socio cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo led by Chief Garry Igarawey and the Igbo Leaders of Thought, led by renowned constitutional lawyer, Prof. Ben Nwabueze.

However, a Chieftain of Ohaneze, and elder statesman, Chief Richard Ozobu, who spoke to newsmen Friday in Enugu told the two bodies to forget about their ambition, because both groups lack credibility to represent Ndigbo.

Ozobu, a former secretary General of the Igbo Umbrella body, rather advised the forum of South East Governor to resolve the dichotomy by implementing an earlier report on the solution to Ohanaeze lingering crisis.

The governors were said to have long resolved to conduct a new Ohanaeze election as a solution to the crisis but nothing has been done about that till now.

Ozobu therefore, suggested that the election could be conducted within two weeks so that Ndigbo could harmonize theirs views so as to speak with one voice at the CONFAB.

He maintained that the Igarawey led Ohanaeze lacked legitimacy since the executive was not properly elected, while the Nwabueze group cannot claim to be representing Ndigbo with a selected few people mostly from Anambra state.

“At least for now we can say let the principal officers be produced; the top leadership of Ohanaeze. Those who are there should vacate because their states have said they did not produce them. And it will not take 48 hours to produce those who should be there.

“I don’t know how critical you think the dialogue is because the last one we had has not been implemented, what matters is this; if there is a terrible division in that place how do we match forward from there as a nation; isn’t that more important?

“I am saying that to represent Ndi-Igbo where Nigeria is meeting it has to be properly done by those who Igbo’s have confidence in through an organization they set up. And we have already said that that vehicle is deficient; the engine is not well; Ohanaeze engine knocked.

“One of the things holding us back on that extra state given to us is Ndi-Igbo agreeing to which state it is going to be. Nobody wants to face the facts.

“The Igbo position and Ohanaeze have no place for these side meetings that Nwabueze is having and he should know better because he is the architect of that constitution. So everything must be done through the framework of Ohanaeze.

“If Nwabueze has endorsed Igariwey and his group and is saying Ohanaeze has accepted this thing then we have to live by it because we said the umbrella organization is Ohanaeze and whatever position they take is what we are going to take as Igbo. So both sides are not competent to speak for Igbo.

“There is still time; the situation can still be remedied within 7-14 days. Let’s go back to the constitution let Ebonyi State bring the President General, call a meeting again and then affirm it; finish. Other aspects can be suspended but the principal officers, those positions, who on daily basis are referred to in any Igbo meeting, President General and Secretary-General, something must happen to them.” he maintained.

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