Oodua People’s Congress, OPC, has warned those it described as self-serving Northern politicians against blackmailing President-elect Bola Ahmed Tinubu over the filling of posts in the 10th National Assembly and the executive, saying that doing so would overheat the polity unnecessarily and spell doom for the country.
OPC president, Otunba Wasiu Afolabi, made the submission in a statement signed on Tuesday by the Secretary, Bunmi Fasehun.
Instead, OPC urged the Northern politicians threatening fire and brimstones over dividing political offices to turn their attention to the genocide in Benue and Plateau states, stop the killings and bring lasting peace to the people there.
According to Afolabi, inflammatory and provocative utterances being made by the few individuals from the North insisting on commandeering principal offices in the National Assembly were clear indications that they had a sense of entitlement and monopoly over the emergence of Tinubu as president in the February 2023 elections.
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Afolabi said: “We want to advise that Tinubu should not be subjected to blackmail by any region over the distribution of legislative and executive offices. There is no single geo-political region where Tinubu scored zero votes; so he was fundamentally elected by all sections of Nigeria, North, South, East and West. He belongs to everybody.
“All regions and religions enjoy equal stakes in the President-Elect. His loyalty must be to all Nigerians and not to any one region or religion.
“It is very funny, curious and contradictory that those who failed to raise a voice to demand equity for other regions when President Muhammadu Buhari was indulging in lopsided appointments and pushing sectional agenda are the ones now clamouring to monopolise positions and offices once more.
“We cannot forget that since 1999, these same people dominated every occupant of the post of President, from Olusegun Obasanjo to Umar Yar’Adua, to Goodluck Jonathan to Muhammadu Buhari. This led these leaders to derail. With Tinubu, it cannot be business as usual.
“It is time for these selfish Northern individuals to release the levers of power and let the occupant of Aso Rock to equally dispense the dividends of democracy so that the entire country will enjoy equity, justice and development.
“Tinubu should not forget that even those who did not vote for him still add great value in terms of the natural resources they contribute to the national treasury.
“The President-Elect must realise that he is inheriting a badly divided country that needs urgent healing from insurgency, insecurity and underdevelopment.
“In this regard, we shall challenge those who are concerned about sharing the spoils of office to urgently fashion out the means to stop the current killing of innocent citizens in Benue and Plateau states and bring the killers to justice.
“OPC shall leave the job of judging Buhari and past administrations to history. But the incoming government has the responsibility to steer the country and the people from the errors of this current government. Tinubu’s failure in this urgent task of forging national unity and economic prosperity means the country might just be doomed –God forbid.
“In line with the direction given by OPC’s late Founder, Dr. Frederick Fasehun, and other visionary national leaders, our organisation shall continue to insist that Nigerians needs to urgently convene a Sovereign National Conference that will fashion out a roadmap for the citizens to live together within one country and under one flag based on peace, equity and justice.
“Organising the Sovereign National Conference, with restructuring and true Federalism as its focal point, will be the greatest legacy of the incoming Tinubu administration. It will address many of the issues driving the dangerous agitations and insecurity that currently bedevil our beloved country.
“Finally, OPC questions the rationale behind the government facilitating fresh loans and appointments in its last days in office, as it appears to be creating unnecessary burdens for the incoming administration.”