The leader of the Pan-Yoruba socio-political group, Afenifere, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, on Monday alleged President Muhammadu Buhari has a plan against the Southwest region of the country.
Naija News understands that Southern and Middle Belt leaders met in Abuja yesterday to deliberate on the issues of zoning the 2023 presidential election.
At the meeting, the political big wigs and elder statesmen reiterated their call for power-shift in the South-East saying that all the other zones have taken their turns at the presidency.
When it was his turn to speak, Adebanjo accused President Buhari of insincerity by giving a green light to his Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo and National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, among others in the Southwest.
He said that former President Goodluck Jonathan has also been dragged into the mud when he acknowledged his interest to join the 2023 presidential race.
The Afenifere leader said Buhari knows the right thing to do but has chosen to cause division among Southwest politicians and also playing dumb to the fact that the South-East are ripe to lead the country.
Adebanjo recalled how he told Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu not to put his trust in President Buhari as the latter would never support such ambition.
He said: “We all know the truth. They don’t want the South-East. It is not because they don’t know what is right.
‘’I only like to point to the fact that they are just deceiving you. All you are hearing, that they (the North) are supporting the South-West is an element of deceit to deprive you, to be able to rule you. They don’t like anybody.
“I told Tinubu himself, not in the papers, face-to-face. ‘You believe this man (Buhari) will make you President?’ He said ‘yes’. I said ‘he wants to make you President and yet he asked (Yemi) Osinbajo to contest? He asked (Kayode) Fayemi to contest, he asked Amosun (Ibikunle) to contest?’ All in the West, why? He wants to divide the West first.
“The unfortunate thing is that President Goodluck Jonathan allowed himself to be disgraced by mentioning the fact that ‘I am considering whether to be president or not. For what?
“Now that it is the turn of the South-East, they are propounding a new theory, it must be based on merit and all that. If it is the question of merit, who in the North qualifies to lead Nigeria? If it has been based on merit, the East alone would produce the President.
“I am saying all these because of the talks about ‘go and sell yourself, go and campaign, go and lobby’, it is all rigmarole. They know the truth.”
Adebanjo acknowledged that though he doesn’t like the presidential aspirants that came out from the East, he still believed it was right to support the region to lead Nigeria this time.
He said: “I am happy you have demonstrated that you have people. But go and unite. A house divided against itself will not stand. The North doesn’t want to leave power. While the South is slugging it out, they put their candidate up”.
He added that the nation could still be a united entity “if we have a government that will give autonomy to regional governments”.
Naija News understands that the leaders expressed themselves at length about the state of the nation at the Greater Nigeria Conference yesterday.
The event held at the International Conference Centre, Abuja was given the theme ‘’Together We Can”.
Presidential aspirants from the South-East were present at the event.
Others were Eze Cletus Ilomuanya, Obi of Obinigwu; the keynote speaker, Dr Bitrus Pogu, who is also President of the Middle Belt Forum, Chairman of the Conference Planning Committee, Dr Okwesilieze Nwodo, Senator Victor Umeh and Senator Chris Anyanwu.
This article was originally published on Nigeria News