Self Development is the best form of Development ~ Obasanjo
ENUGU— Former President Olusegun Obasanjo, yesterday, asked Ndigbo and their governors to take their destiny in their hands by developing the South-East geographical zone instead of waiting for the government.
Obasanjo said there was no need for the governors to wait for the Federal Government to develop South-East when they already had the instruments already.
Obasanjo noted that economy and security were two sides of the same coin, adding that none could be achieved without the other.
He also asked Igbo elders to intervene in the on-going agitation for Biafra Republic to bring the situation under control.
Obasanjo described the Igbo stock as unique people, saying their entrepreneurial and communal efforts were driven with the spirit of adventure.
He spoke as the Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu asked President Muhammadu Buhari to obey an earlier court order compelling the Federal Government to release the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu.
Ekweremadu further lamented that the South-East zone was not represented at the apex level of either the military or the police.
On the rule of law and fundamental human rights as enshrined in the 1999 Constitution as amended, Ekweremadu insisted that Kanu must have his day in court and if court orders his release, he must be released.
Both Obasanjo and Ekweremadu spoke, yesterday at the South East Economic and Security Summit in Enugu.
Among those who attended the summit included former Secretary of the Commonwealth, Chief Emeka Anyaoku; former Vice President, Dr. Alex Ekwueme; Chief Pascal Dozie; Mbazulike
Amaechi; Ben Akabueze; Gen. Azubuike Ihejirika (retd), among other dignitaries.
President Muhammadu Buhari was expected as a guest during the summit but he neither attended nor sent any representative.
Develop your zone, don’t wait for FG, Obasanjo tells S-East govs, Ndigbo
According to Obasanjo, the aim of the summit was on how the industrious people of the zone could do things for themselves other than relying on government’s intervention.
Obasanjo said: “Insecurity in any part of the country affects the other. The instruments of doing the jobs are already with you.
“The South-East had been known from time for entrepreneurship, community effort services and their spirit of adventure. The papa Okafor has been there in my village right from when I was growing up and nobody has taken those traits away from the Igboman, but how do we use it to achieve economic prosperity and security?
“You can’t have security when the economy of your people is not well taken care of and you can’t have security without economic prosperity. What we need to do here is to harness what we have.
“The people of the South-East are extremely unique and need to be harnessed. We should work together and that is the purpose of this summit.”
The former president told the gathering to look in the ways of their fertile agricultural land, the Aba industrial cluster, and other minerals both on the surface and beneath the earth to grow their economy.
“Whatever we can do for ourselves, let us do it for ourselves. If I could go to Maiduguri when Boko Haram was raging and I had to try to reach out to them in the interest of the country, I don’t think I have to be eulogized for being part of the initiative of South-East summit.
“Security is all inclusive. If there is no security in any part of the country, there is no security in the entire country. All the governors have spoken. I am delighted. They said ‘we have things we can do if given the instrument’. You have the instruments already.