Former Governor of Old Anambra State and Chairman, Former Governors’ Forum, Chief Jim Ifeanyichukwu Nwobodo, has called on General Muhammadu Buhari to quickly reunite Nigerians in order to heal the wounds inflicted on the nation by the March 28 presidential election.
He told Journalists at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu yesterday that the voting pattern in the last Saturday’s election had shown “a great divide across ethnic and religious lines.”
Nwobodo spoke on the outcome of the presidential poll even as a University Don, Prof. Alloysius Okolie, in his congratulatory message to General Buhari, urged him to commit himself to the fight against corruption and impunity in the land.
Chief Nwobodo congratulated General Buhari for his landslide victory in the presidential poll and President Goodluck Jonathan for his sportsmanship in conceding defeat.
He assured Buhari that Igbos would support and cooperate with him and his government in moving Nigeria forward in spite of the way the Igbos voted in the presidential election.
While calling on Ndigbo and indeed all Nigerians to shun unguarded utterances that could heat up the polity, the former governor also reminded General Buhari that “the campaigns and elections are over and every Nigerian irrespective of tribe, tongue and religion, would very soon become your responsibility.”
On his part, a former Dean of the Department of Political Science, University of Nigeria Nsukka, Okolie has urged the President-elect to see his election as an act of God and to carry everybody along irrespective of political party, religion and tribal affiliations in order to meet the high expectations of Nigerians.
“Buhari should see himself now as father to all Nigerians and not APC alone to move the country forward.
“He should select technocrats and people with good track records rather than mediocre and should avoid using ministerial appointments as political compensation to those who supported his campaigns,” he said.
Okolie, also told Daily Times in an interview that the prompt congratulatory message of President Jonathan to the President-elect, Gen Mohammad Buhari shows that he is a true democrat that should be emulated by other African leaders.
“Jonathan has set good example in Africa on politics of maturity, it’s unbelievable that in Africa where some leaders fight with the last ounce of their blood to maintain their political position, one conceded to defeat immediately.
“It’s also an indication that democratic values are gradually taken root in Nigeria.
“I commend Jonathan‘s spirit of sportsmanship and urged other African and world leaders to emulate his good example, ‘he said.
He said Jonathan’s lost in Saturday presidential election should be a big lesson to politicians in the country that no matter your position you can be removed by the people through the power of ballot paper.
“This call for quality delivery of democracy dividend by elected persons, to avoid being disgraced out of office by electorates, ‘he said.
The political scientist however, described the inability of Jonathan to get majority votes in some northern states in last Saturday election as result of high level of conspiracy by those whom Jonathan thought were working with him.
“Some PDP wigs and governors in the North conspired and betrayed Jonathan in that presidential poll’
“The inability of Jonathan to win in states like Jigawa, Kaduna where the vice president hailed from and Bauchi the home of PDP national chairman, is an eloquent testimony of conspiracy and sabotage of PDP members in those states, ‘he said.