Political Leaders and Socio-Cultural Organizations from South-East Zone Express Outrage over Ministerial Nominations
Leaders and representatives from the South-East geo-political zone have raised their voices in protest against what they perceive as an unjust distribution of ministerial nominations by President Bola Tinubu.
Accusing the President of perpetuating the marginalization of the Ndigbo community, political figures and socio-cultural organizations have criticized the All Progressives Congress (APC) for its approach.
The president’s recent ministerial nominations, totaling 48, have sparked strong reactions, particularly from South-East leaders, who claim that the list reflects a disregard for the region.
The allocation of ministerial nominees appeared unbalanced, with the North-West and South-West receiving three additional ministers each, North-East, North-Central, and South-South gaining two extra slots, while the South-East received none.
The South-East leaders contend that every part of the country should be treated fairly and equitably in political representation.
Senator Tony Nwoye from Anambra North highlighted the “lopsidedness” in the appointments, emphasizing the South-East’s perceived underrepresentation.
Former presidential aide Reno Omokri commended Tinubu’s decision, suggesting that ignoring the South-East’s interests in this context could impact future elections.
However, Igbo leaders expressed their dissatisfaction with the perceived marginalization, stressing that, despite more than 50 years since the civil war, the South-East region continues to be treated as if under martial rule.
They challenged the criteria that led to some regions receiving additional nominations while others, like the South-East, were left out.
In response, stakeholders called upon the apex Igbo socio-cultural organization, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, to consider pursuing legal action against the Federal Government if the President does not address the imbalance adequately.
Numerous figures from different spheres of influence echoed the sentiment that the South-East deserved more representation. Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Benjamin Kalu, urged for greater inclusivity in Tinubu’s cabinet, while former Minister of Education, Professor Ihechukwu Madubuike, labeled the situation as a “calculated attempt to continue the marginalization of Ndigbo.”
The Coalition of South-East Youth Leaders (COSEYL) criticized the denial of extra ministerial nominees to the South-East as a breach of constitutional principles. COSEYL demanded three additional slots for the South-East to achieve parity with other regions, asserting that any attempt to relegate the region would not be tolerated.
Various other voices, such as former Secretary to the State Government Pastor Ralph Egbu and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Igbo Think Tank, Professor Madubuike Ezeibe, contended that the situation perpetuated an unequal political equilibrium.
Furthermore, the President of Igboezue International Association Nigeria and the Diaspora (IIAND), Chief Pius Okoye, emphasized that the South-East’s share in the nation should not be disregarded, and legal action might be pursued if necessary.
Meanwhile, the Ohanaeze Youth Council (OYC) stated that their primary focus lies in obtaining the presidency for the South-East, rather than seeking ministerial appointments.
They emphasized their commitment to unifying the nation through equitable representation.
As opinions varied on the president’s nominations, Segun Sowunmi from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) expressed concern over the apparent lopsidedness. He questioned the distribution of appointments, suggesting that fair treatment was imperative.
In contrast, Reno Omokri defended the appointments, asserting that adhering to constitutional requirements for each zone should be the basis for evaluating the nominations, rather than emotional reactions.
The controversy surrounding these ministerial appointments highlights broader issues of representation and equity within Nigeria’s political landscape, echoing the call for a fair and inclusive government that reflects the nation’s diversity.
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