Igbo People: It’s unthinkable that any Igbo man would want to leave Nigeria
President Muhammadu Buhari has said he would want to be remembered as the Nigerian leader who stabilised the country in the area of security, economic prosperity and triumphs over corruption.
The president spoke in Owerri at a town hall meeting with South-East leaders during his one-day official visit to Imo state.
He also rated the Igbo as being in charge of the nation’s economy, saying it will be unthinkable that Igbo would leave Nigeria.
Buhari said with less than two years left into his eight-year tenure, security still remains a major priority of his administration.
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“If there is no security, there is nothing anyone can do no matter how much you try or the initiative you have. Security is the number one priority and then the economy. When people feel secure, they will mind their own business,” he said.
The president told Southeast leaders that while fighting corruption in Nigeria had become very sophisticated and difficult, he would continue to strive to leave a lasting legacy of integrity and accountability in the system.
“Nobody can accuse me of having companies or mansions anywhere in the country and I thank God that I try to keep myself as clean as possible so that I cannot be taken hostage by that.
“I will do my best to ensure that Nigerians that try hard, succeed in their efforts,” he said.
On the forthcoming 2023 elections, the president reaffirmed his commitment to free, fair and credible polls, urging the leaders to honestly educate their constituencies on the need to hold their elected representatives accountable.
Acknowledging the resourcefulness and enterprising spirit of the Igbo people, the president said: “The fundamental thing about the Igbo people is that there is no town you will visit in Nigeria without seeing the Igbos being in charge of either infrastructure or pharmaceutical industry.
“Therefore, it is unthinkable for me that any Igbo man would consider himself not to be a part of Nigeria. The evidence is there for everyone to see that Igbos are in charge of Nigeria’s economy.”
While stating that no country can make any meaningful progress without the development of infrastructure, the president expressed regret that successive governments at the federal level contributed to the decay of critical infrastructure in the country.
He promised that the federal government would complete ongoing key projects in the South-east, including the 2nd Niger Bridge as well as the railway lines and routes linking the region with other parts of the country.
“I firmly believe that when you get infrastructure right, Nigerians will mind their own businesses,” he said, adding that as a group, the Igbos stand to benefit more from the ongoing development of infrastructure in the country because “they are more enterprising”.