We Didn’t Endorse Atiku, Says Ohanaeze

The leadership of Ohanaeze in Bayelsa State has dissociated itself from the purported endorsement of former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar.

Abubakar was in the state recently to canvass support for his presidential ambition. Ohanaeze noted that it was against the objectives of the pan-Igbo socio-cultural group to delve into partisan politics, describing the alleged endorsement as a disgrace and unfortunate.

The Caretaker Chairman of the group in Bayelsa, Chief Nlem Mark, made the clarifications on Sunday at Imiringi during a reconciliatory meeting with local chapters of Ohanaeze in Ogbia Local Government Area.

He said those who purportedly endorsed Atiku Abubakar when the Peoples Democratic Party had yet to pick its presidential candidate were impostors and political jobbers whose sole aim remained monetary gains.

According to him, the action was carried out by discredited and suspended members led by Chief Chinedu Amaku, who, along with his cohorts, paraded themselves as leaders of Ohanaeze Ndigbo in Bayelsa.

In a communiqué issued after the meeting signed by Mark and Chief Chinedu Arthur-Ugwa, Leader of Ohanaeze Youth Wing in Bayelsa, the group urged the Bayelsa Government to severe links with the impostors.

According to the group, the suspended members were boasting that they were enjoying the recognition of the Secretary to Bayelsa Government and were working to sabotage the efforts of Ohanaeze national executive.

The communiqué read in part, “The claim that the secretary to Bayelsa Government was the force behind their actions is regrettable; if it is true, it leaves us to assume that they were behind the disunity which our elders are working to end.

“The President of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Nnia Nwodo, had urged the state government to work in harmony with the caretaker committee pending elections.

“We therefore wonder why some appointees of the governor chose to align with suspended members to sabotage the Nwodo-led leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo.

“We therefore urge the Bayelsa government to intervene by cautioning their appointees before their actions would lead to breach of the existing peace.”

The group noted that the protracted leadership crisis was retarding the progress of Ohanaeze Ndigbo in Bayelsa and was delaying the release of a bus donated to the group by the state government.

It restated that the group was solidly behind Bayelsa government in making the state a safer and better place to live.

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