A coalition of pan-Igbo sociopolitical pressure organisations, the South East Revival Group (SERG) has described the “soaked sliced bread” statement made by the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu, as taking deep seated hatred for the Igbos too far, saying that it is beyond a mere insult as some would be made to believe.
He had urged the South East region to “work hard, sweat for this party until they deliver victory for him”, adding, “But nobody will give you any credit, you are working hard, you’re sweating now. We want you to sweat well now for this party until you deliver victory.
“Until Bola Tinubu becomes the president of Nigeria, we will not give you but a soaked sliced bread.”
In its reaction to the comments made by the APC presidential candidate, the SERG in a statement signed by its President and National Coordinator, Chief Willy Ezugwu said that “the insinuation that Igbos will languish in longer marginalisation unless Tinubu becomes President is an acknowledgement that he APC deliberately schemed the South East region since 2015.
“Tinubu’s comments represent refreshed version of President Muhammadu Buhari’s comment that he would not treat the South East equally with the Northern region that voted for him.
“These comments by the APC presidential candidate is an expression of the party’s disdain for the South East region.
“Recall that several sources have revealed that in build up to the APC presidential primary election, Bola Ahmed Tinubu as an aspirant boycotted South East delegates of his party, saying that campaigning in the South East was a waste of time.
“True to his words, he never wasted his time reaching out to his party’s delegates in the region, yet they voted massively for him either by hook or by crook.
“It is taking his disregard for the South East too far.
“When his anointed Governor, Babajide Raji Fashola deported Igbos from Lagos State and dumped them at the Onitsha Bridge Head in the middle of the night, where was Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?
“When his ally and the Oba of Lagos threatened Igbos to drown in the lagoon if they voted against his preferred candidate, where was Tinubu’s voice as a democrat?
“A Tinubu presidency will be a disaster as he has continued to exhibit the distinguishing characteristics of not only a civilian dictator but also a religious bigot masquerading as a liberal Muslim.
“His choice of a Muslim running is a deliberate expression his real self as having no regard for Christians and now he blew the final whistle that signalled the climax of his hatred for the South East region.
“We also monited a report indicating that the Tinubu’s hatred for the South East also robbed off on the traditional institution as some highly embarrassed Enugu traditional rulers led by the State Chairman of the Traditional Rulers’ Council, Igwe Lawrence Agubuzo were snubbed, disrespected and insulted by the APC Presidential candidate after waiting for several hours for his arrival.
“Can Tinubu openly snub an Oba in the South West or an Emir in the North?”, the SERG asked.
By Willy Ezugwu