Imo state governor, Rochas Okorocha, has called on indigenes of the south-east to do away with jealousy and fight and instead move closer to God by organising an atonement prayer for the region before 2019 general elections.
The governor, who said his heart sometimes bleed for the Igbo region, also warned the Ohanaeze Ndigbo against taking side in the forthcoming 2019 general elections.
Okorocha made this statement through his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo, when the National Organizing Committee for the 2018 Igbo Day Celebration led by Gregory Ibe, paid him a visit at government House Owerri.
The press secretary said Governor Rochas Okorocha has called on Ohanaeze Ndigbo to Champion Reconciliation among the Igbos, and also set out a day for atonement for Ndigbo, stating that the Igbos need God more than anything else.
He added that the governor also advised the body to distance itself from partisan politics to avoid Ndigbo losing when the Party or Candidate the organization supports loses.
He said: “Ohanaeze should be smart when it comes to the issue of partisan politics so that no matter the Candidate or the Party that wins, Ohanaeze can move in to do the needful.
“I have told the National President of Ohanaeze about the need for Ohanaeze to Champion Reconciliation among Igbos.
“I said at Evan Enwerem’s book launch, Jim Nwobodo and Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu were there, that when I was growing up, all I heard was that Iwuanyanwe never saw eye to eye with Enwerem. Jim Nwobodo never saw eye to eye with Ekwueme. I asked Iwuanyanwu, where is Enwerem today to fight and Jim, where is Ekwueme to fight
“This ugly development has been transferred from your generation to my generation. Rochas Okorocha and Ngige. Obi and Obiano, and so on. So, our generation has also taken that way. And we are not helping matters. So there should be a very emotional moment for everyone in form of reconciliation. And Onanaeze should champion it.
The governor also called for prayers for the south-east region. He urged the people of the region to move closer to God.
He said: “There is need for Ndigbo to bow down their heads in adoration to the Most High God and Ohanaeze can champion that. We must begin to do things a bit differently. We can do something new. This is where I specially disagree with the elite of Igboland. Let’s try something new since there is no harm in failure, but an invitation to start again.
“My heart sometimes bleeds for the Igbo nation and when I see you people, I tell you how I feel. One of our major pivots upon which the wheels or faith of the Igbo man revolves is the Church and it has also been tainted.
“Look at the statement by Mbaka of recent, it’s the most embarrassing, but nobody will speak out. We must act quickly now under the present ugly situation before we destroy the psyche of Ndigbo yet unborn.”
Meanwhile, we earlier reported that the minister of labour and employment, Dr Chris Ngige, urged the people of south-east to return President Muhammadu Buhari to power in 2019 so as not to lose out on getting a president of Igbo extraction in 2023.
Ngige, while speaking with reporters in Obosi in Idemili North local government area of Anambra state on Sunday, Decmber 9, said an Igbo man might have a chance to take over presidency in 2023 if President Buhari is allowed to serve another four years.