Emeka Ojukwu jnr, son of late Dim Chukwuemeka Ojukwu on Wednesday revealed why he dumped the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) for the All Progressives Congress (APC)
He explained that his decision was driven by his believe that the South East must occupy its rightful place in the national governance and the political decision making process of the country.
Ojukwu jnr said this when he was formally received into the APC by the party’s leadership led by the Party’s National Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun at the National Secretariat in Abuja.
Ojukwu jnr had earlier made his declaration in Awka at a rally for Tony Nwoye, the APC candidate for the November 18 Anambra governorship election.
Speaking on what motivated him, he said: “I decided to lead by example. I have been talking about this for a while and I decided it was time to take the step forward.
“It is a challenge. There are some people that will not be happy about that, but you have to be bold, take a step and let people understand where you are coming from and why you are doing what you are doing.
“APC have been seen in our part of the country as the ‘other’ and I believe we are now showing that the APC is a party that can contend equally with any other party in the South East and do just as well.
“We now know that Igbo people are part of the APC, the APC are part of Igbo and Igbo are valued part of the Nigerian nation.
“We hit around the 25 per cent mark in terms of votes in the Anambra election which is not bad given where we are coming from. I think in the future, we are going to do a lot better.
“Let me say this about my father; we shouldn’t take our history and our past to be shackles that hold us in one place, rather they should be stepping stones and building blocks to get us moving towards the future.
“When my father came back from exile, he had the option to join an ethnic-based party but he chose to move to the centre and there was a reason for that.
“You need to be at the table where decisions are being made. If you are not there, you will always get the short end of the stick, you will be marginalised. That is the message I want to help to propagate.
“This is a much bigger party than the one I came from, so I put myself at your service to help us achieve our dreams. For me, anyway that I can help to push this message forward, I am ready.”
Speaking, Oyegun said the new member will be a major asset in APC’s ongoing drive to mainstream the South East in the national governance and political decision making.
Odigie-Oyegun said: “I thank you for choosing the APC, a family that is practical in its political orientation. It is significant that you chose the platform of the final rally at Akwa to make your very significant statement.
“I noted particularly the interpretation of your illustrious father’s interpretation of joining the NPN and the significance of being part of the Party’s decision making process such that for anybody who seeks to represent a large group, nationality of that nature, it is critical that he seeks to be where decisions that may affect his people are made.
“I hope the lesson went home, it is a lesson we will continue to propagate, particularly in the south east because we hold the region very dear.
“I have no doubt that your appearance there (Awka) also contributed significantly to the progress we have made in Anambra state and we are looking forward to being able to propagate that to the other South East states as we start approaching the next set of elections.”