By Melvin Uche, Maiduguri
An Elderstatesman and Chieftain of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Borno state, Alhaji Ahmed Ashemi, has described the clamour for power shift to the southeastern part of Nigeria as panacea to bringing stability and peace to the nation.
The APC Chieftain however urged elders and leaders in the southeast to douse the problem of insecurity in the region by prevailing on the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB ), Eastern Security Network (ESN ) and others to sheath their sword for peace to reign.
Alhaji Ashemi made his opinion known on Sunday in Maiduguri, Borno State.
He said if the southeast really wants to be part of the union and also benefit from participating in the leadership of the country, they must put their acts together.
He said: “Talking of power shift, there is the need to give the southeast an opportunity only if they will put their acts together and bring a candidate that is acceptable and trusted by the rest of the country.
“We have to call a spade a spade, as a result of the unfortunate past such as civil war and some massacre, coupled with suspicion and mistrust, there has been fear of any one from southeast particularly becoming president of Nigeria.
“Now, it is left to the southeast , if they really want to be part of this union and also benefit from participating in the leadership of this country, they must put their acts together. “And one of the first steps they can take now is to douse the problem of insecurity that is now being witnessed in the region through the activities of secessionist groups and so on.
“In my opinion, that is not the way to seek political power in a federation like Nigeria. “So, elders and leaders of the southeast region must prevail on these people that are now trying to bring about insecurity and instability to the country to please sheath their sword and follow democratic way of of doing it.
“I believe there are lots of people who will support their ambition because of fairness and justice, that every sector of this country taste the power and contribute to running of the country. “And that is the only panacea to bringing about stability to our country so that everybody must feel that they belong also,” Alhaji Ashemi said.
On the impending APC convention, the elderstatesman opined that leadership of the party at the national level should not allow themselves to be viewed as if they are manipulating their positions to perpetrate themselves in the leadership of the party.
He urged the APC caretaker Committee to respect their own promise of conducting free and fair congresses and convention to provide leadership for the party in the country.
As for the hairmanship of the party at the national level, the APC chieftain maintained that if the presidency is zoned to the south, the chairmanship of the party should be zoned to the North-East particularly, to Borno state.
Alhaji Ashemi said for the fact that Borno has remained a solid base of the APC from its inception, and that being that there is no foreseeable party that can dislodge APC in the state, the party should reciprocate it by zoning either the vice presidential or chairmanship slot of the party to Borno state.