Why I’ve not made official declaration for presidency – Kalu

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From Okey Sampson, Umuahia

Chief Whip of the 9th Senate Dr Orji Uzor Kalu has given the reason why he has not officially declared for the presidency ticket for the 2023 general election.

In a state, the former governor of Abia state said it was his desire and intention to run for the Presidency of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, “but I can’t make an official declaration to this regard without the full support of other regions”.

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According to Kalu, “Everywhere in the world, politics is situational and that of Nigeria is exceptionally situational.

“The situation in Nigeria is that without the support of other regions, it would amount to a shadow chase for a South Easterner to be President.

“This is the reason I have been in the frontline of the call that the two major political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) should zone their presidential tickets to the South East as they did for the South West in 1999”.

The Senate Chief Whip was emphatic that in the absence of zoning the presidency to the South East, he would be returning to the Senate and stay away from the presidential contest.

Kalu said he was shocked with the number of aspirants coming from the South West and South south without recourse for the South East that was yet to produce a president.

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“I am even shocked with the number of aspirants coming from the South West and the South South. It is embarrassing that these aspirants (from APC and PDP) have no single respect and concern for the South East. I had thought they would think about the South East; I thought they would support us.

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“It has become a joke to an ordinary Nigerian who hears Southern commentators and aspirants rooting for a Southern President on the premise of fairness, equity and justice.

“If there is anything like “fairness”, “equity” and “justice”, it should be the entire South pushing for a president of South East extraction. Anything less than that is “hypocritical”, “unjustifiable”and “inordinate”. Some ‘persons’ are even claiming God’s anointed choice in 2023 . Unfortunately, it is not all prayers that God answer; at least not inordinate ones”.

Kalu questioned the moral justification a Southerner who refused to be fair to his brothers, have against a Northerner running for president.

“It will be very insensitive , unreasonable and disrespectful for any Southern man to criticize a presidential aspirant from the North on the ground that the North has done eight years and power should return to the South.

“The South West and the South South have successfully completed their tenures as ‘President and Vice President’.They should have the courage to support their brothers from the South East. If the next president after President Muhammadu Buhari does not come from the South East , there would be nothing unfair and unjust if he/she comes from Daura”, Kalu said.

The former governor said the two geopolitical zones that were yet to produce a President are South East and North East, stressing that if this means anything to Nigerians, the APC and PDP should be fair enough to prioritize the two zones.

“If power should come to the South and not the South East or North and not the North East, the essence for which the six geopolitical zones were created is long dead”.

He thanked elder statesmen like Pa Ayo Adebanjo, Chief Edwin Clark , Deji Adeyanju and others who he said have stood firm in their support for their brothers in the South East, adding that posterity will be kind to them.