Oscar Onwudiwe, the President of Aka Ikenga, a body of Igbo Professionals, says Nigeria would never develop until there is equity in the distribution of resources and opportunities in the country.
He noted that the South-East geopolitical zone has always been relegated to the background in the scheme of things in Nigeria.
According to him, the North is benefitting more from Nigeria because of supposed larger population which he described as a lie concocted by the British colonial masters and fervently maintained by the Northern oligarchy.
Onwudiwe stated that this population size is vigorously exploited during elections but hardly seen in terms of tax contribution, school enrolment, and number of professionals.
The Aka Ikenga president disclosed these in an interview published by Saturday Sun, while reacting to former Anambra governor, Chief Chukwuemeka Ezeife’s statement that the South-East would cease to be part of Nigeria if denied the 2023 presidency.
Onwudiwe said, “I have a lot of respect for ex-governor Ezeife. He is an Igbo patriot of conviction but the question I will ask him is this, was there ever anytime we had a sense of belonging? I mean Igbo, did we have it before?
“To me it is not presidency that is the issue, you don’t have to be President before certain things happen in your area. If we decide to live by the dictates of the federal character, nobody would bother about being president because anybody that gets there will not only be fair but will also abide by what the constitution says about federal character vis-a-vis distribution of wealth, and resources.
“But unfortunately, we are today dealing with an administration that doesn’t believe in all these. We are dealing with people who are totally dependent on government, and all the offices in government are not enough for them. Practically all the elections we have been holding in this country have been do- or –die, and when you get power through a do-or-die approach, then it is a winner takes all.
“The British, our former colonial master made things worst when they announced that the population in the desert North is more than that of the forest areas in the South. But the irony of it is that we don’t see this population in terms of school enrollment in the North, you don’t see it in payment of tax, you don’t see it in the number of professionals they have.
“The only time you see this so-called population in the North is during the time of voting, during election time, and this lie has been thoroughly maintained, and this is why no census in Nigeria can ever be true.
“The census is always manipulated to make sure that higher figures are given to Northerners who inherited colonialism from the British overlords.”