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Develop Igboland and Stop Marginalization cries – Amechi, Anya, others

Igbo leaders, yesterday, urged Ndigbo to end the cries of marginalization and channel their energies towards the development of Igboland.

The igbo leaders, who made this call include First Republic Minister of Aviation, Chief Mbazulike Amechi; former Senate President and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim; former Chairman of the Nigeria Economic Summit Group, NESG, Professor Anya O. Anya; former Presidential Candidate, Professor Pat Utomi; Professor Osita Ogbu; Senator Chris Anyanwu; Professor Barth Nnaji; and former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Prince Chibudom Nwuche.

They spoke at the zoom/virtual presentation and launch of Igbo Data Base – Igbodum by a leading Igbo pressure and intellectual group, Nzuko Ummuna, led by Professor Pat Utomi and Mr Ngozi Odumuko.

Professor Pat Utomi, who heads the board of Nzuko Ummuna, lamented that the Igbo had been on the back seat in Nigeria in the last 50 years because of what happened during the Nigeria-Biafra civil war. ‘Now, ‘‘there is need for Igbo unity and collaboration to develop Igboland.”

Chairman of the event, Senator Anyim, said with the launch of the Igbo data base, history was being made because for the first time the Igbos were aggregating themselves.

”Over the years, Igbo have not been able to place value on their strength and contributions to national development. There is need for development of Igboland. Every Igbo should approach the project with patriotism because it will impact on us and the nation,” he said.

Also speaking, Mbazulike Amaechi said Igbo must shun too much talk and do the needful. ”During our time, we will do what should be done. Today, there is so much talk. We have wealthy people abroad. Let them come back and develop Igboland. There is nothing Igbo cannot do for themselves. Look at Israel, with technological, and educational power, it is a force to reckon with in the world now.

Let Igbo not focus on pursuit of political power but look for other powers – technological, economic, educational, etc and develop Igbo land, and create employment for our people.”

Professor Barth Nnaji aligned with Amaechi and Anya, adding that economic development would make the Igbo achieve their desires including political power.

Noting that the Jews were now a force to reckon with in America and Europe because of their education and economic power, he  urged Ndigbo to emulate the Jews.

His words: ”We can aspire for political power but must focus on economic development. We require knowledge , exposure, intelligence and capacity to achieve economic development. Having diversity all over the world is an asset. But we lack understanding of our full capacity. Let’s have a way to reach and touch our people. That is why the database is important.

Also, Professor Osita Ogbu, who chairs the Alaigbo Stabilisation Fund, ASF, a committee of 54 Igbo leaders set up by Ohanaeze Ndigbo and South-East governors, last July, said he is happy with the current initiative.

”I am happy with this initiative. After 50 years of the civil war, we are still talking of marginalisation. We can move forward with economic development like Japan and Barcelona in Spain,” he said.

Vanguard News Nigeria

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