By INIOBONG EKPONTA, Uyo
A coalition of no fewer than 13 socio-political groups drawn from the South-South and Southeast, have expressed dismay at calls by the National Youths Council of Nigeria (NYCN) for the Minister of Transportation, Chief Chibuike Amaechi, to resign within 48 hours, describing the action as “a big distraction borne out of mischief”.
Describing the action as a sponsored blackmail with the intention of distracting the Minister in his avowed plans to seek presidential mandate in 2023, The coalition, warned those behind the action against overheating the polity.
They, therefore, commended the Minister Amaechi, “for shunning all political distractions to put your best foot forward in the big decision to rescue Nigeria”.
The former Rivers governor had declared over the weekend to be part of the race to succeed outgoing President Muhammadu Buhari, in 2023, during the All Progressives Congress (APC) thanksgiving ceremony at the Adokie Amasiemaka stadium, Igwuruta, Port Harcourt, Rivers state.
In a statement made available to Newsmen in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom state capital on Tuesday, Comrade Ordinance Emeji, the Director-General (DG), Media Vanguard for Change (MVC), one of the coalition groups Secretary Igbikiminachin Kalio noted that “Amaechi’s declaration has put sent fear to the camp of some political enemies to begin sponsored blackmail against him”.
Emeji, in the statement on behalf of the Southern youths’ group, said “with the final declaration to run, the stage is now set for the youths across the zones to engender effective mobilization to ensure he gets the nod of delegates to the forthcoming presidential primary in Abuja”.
“We are very happy that at last, the Minister did not disappoint the youths of the South-South and Southeast, and truly heeded our clarion call for him to stake his hat in the ring for the interest of unity, peace and development of the country.
“As the two-term Speaker of the Rivers state House of Assembly; two governor and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum as well as two term Federal Minister, we have no doubt in his ability to deliver if he eventually scales the hurdle of nomination.
“We are set to mobilize for him across the country because he has vast experience in politics and governance in Nigeria, and his broad experience various positions at the state and federal levels put him in a better position as the best for the country at this moment of national tension occasion in virtually all geo-political zones of the country”.
Urging Nigerians to rally round a youthful and patriotic aspirant, Igbiks Kalio and Comrade Emeji pointed out that “the country need some one with determination and patriotic spirit to re-invent Nigeria and tailor it along the path of real development that has eluded us in the last couple of years”.
He, therefore, appealed to the Minister to begin consultations and horse-trading with a view to drawing key stakeholders, the delegates and the electorates to key into the vision of a new Nigeria under him from 2023″.