The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has described as ‘unfortunate’ the comment of the Chairman, Daar Communications Ltd, Raymond Dokpesi, who said that there is no candidate in the South East or in the entire South that can win the presidency in 2023 under the Peoples Democratic Party.
Dokpesi had, in an interview with the Daily Trust Newspaper on Saturday, October 9, 2021, stated that: “The South East cannot win the election for the PDP. That is just the truth of the matter. I don’t beat around the bush; I treat issues as they are and as I understand them. There is no candidate from the South East, even I dare say there is no candidate from the South that you put in the North today that will be able to win. It is going to be a humongous challenge.”
But Ohanaeze Ndigbo, in a statement on Tuesday signed by its National Publicity Secretary Alex Ogbonnia, titled, ‘Dokpesi Oscillates’, said the chairman of Daar Communications’ comments negated the position of the 17 southern governors that presidency should return to the South in 2023.
“Dokpesi’s assumptions are unreflective, weird and unworthy. Any person who loves Nigeria should be an advocate of power rotation, especially between the north and the South; and those our sons and daughters who lay claim to leadership should not, under any guise, give the impression that the south is a lame-duck, an electoral liability; and therefore must depend on the north to define the political trajectory of Nigeria.”
Ohanaeze regretted that as one of the leaders of the South-South People Assembly, Dokpesi should seek to promote south-south people of Nigeria with his fortune instead of playing to the gallery to appeal to his benefactors in the north.
The apex Igbo sociocultural body said it would have ignored his comment as a mundane distraction but was constrained to react to “save the gullible public from his shibboleth,” while it maintained that until there is justice in Nigeria, there can never be peace.
The statement partly reads: “Those who lament on the bleak future of Nigeria often cite the unpredictable character of our leaders.
“The Greek political philosopher, Plato, was so dissatisfied with leaders who lacked the moral strength to act according to the common good – in other words, rulers motivated by self-interest were not good leaders. Most do not realize that the forces of morality and justice constitute the transcendental cord that holds humanity in shape.
“In other words, there can never be peace in the absence of justice. Put differently, Nigeria will remain in crises until the leaders embrace justice, equity and fairness as a guiding philosophy.
“I sympathise with our southern son, Chief Dokpesi because he started as the personal assistant to Alhaji Bamaga Tukur at the Nigerian Ports Authority. Dokpesi also served under Alhaji Umaru Dikko and General Garba Wushishi. Records reveal that Alh. Bamanga Tukur paid his fees from secondary school to the post graduate level. To that extent, he owes allegiance to his benefactors and feels no compunction to profile the entire south as electoral liability.
“One can easily understand the psychological ambivalence in the Dokpesi persona. On the other hand, there is no reason for the condescension and disdain he handed over to the entire South.
Ohanaeze however, reminded Dokpesi that several educated refined patriotic northerners were allergic to the supremacist born to rule entrepreneurs which it said had created the current Nigerian dilemma.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide is dismayed that Dokpesi could demonstrate this type of duplicity in a matter that is so clearly defined.
“The human spirit does not oscillate like a pendulum; East, West, North and South. The rotation of presidency between the North and the South is the truth. Two options are before the advocates of justice and progress in Nigeria; we either choose light or darkness”