Former governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha, has claimed the All Progressives Congress (APC) would be proving itself to be a northern political party if it does not let present a southerner as its presidential candidate heading into the 2023 general elections.
Okorocha also challenged the South-East to present a good reason the nation should have an Igbo man as the next president.
He disclosed these on Monday at an event tagged “Conversation with Owelle Rochas Okorocha at 59 and Award of Icon of Service and Philanthropy’, organised by the Nigerian Union of Journalists, FCT chapter.
He said, “I support the southern governors on the issue of zoning the presidency and the next region is the South. We started with South-West when President Olusegun Obasanjo (became the president). Then we went back to the North when we had Yar’Adua. South again with Goodluck Jonathan, and now the North is having it with the incumbent president.
“So, why would it be changed when it’s the turn of the south again? It’s a fair thing to do. If this is not done, then APC becomes a northern party.”
The former Governor further touched on the activities of agitated secessionist group, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
He said the proscribed group was once at his office to air their grievances and he offered them a listening ear instead of the forceful route taken by the Federal Government and state government in recent times.
“When IPOB started, they came to Imo State when I was the governor, but I listened to them and understood their grievances. They asked me to join them, and I told them if they can convince me to have another (Biafra country) passport, I’d join.
“I could have asked my men to shoot them as they were killed in Okigwe and other states, but no. I had to listen to know what they were going through. That’s how the Nigerian government should treat the youths, sympathise with them. Treat them well,” Okorocha said.