The group said recent developments had indications that Buhari was pursuing ethnic agenda and that he was not ready to accommodate Ndigbo in his government.
President Buhari had after several months of keeping Nigerians in suspense, announced the appointment of Engr. Babachir David Lawal from Adamawa State as the Secretary to the Government of the Federation; as well as Alhaji Abba Kyari for the position of Chief of Staff to the President.
Others appointed included Col. Hameed Ibrahim Ali (rtd.)- Comptroller-General, Nigerian Customs Service; Mr. Kure Martin Abeshi – Comptroller-General, Nigerian Immigration Service; Senator Ita S.J. Enang – SSA to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate) and Hon. Suleiman A. Kawu -SSA to the President on National Assembly Matters (House of representatives).
None of the positions came the way of the South-East region.
In a reaction, the Ohaneze Youth Council said the President had demonstrated his hatred for Ndigbo, even after he had said he belonged to nobody but belonged to everybody.
President of the of the OYC, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, in a press statement jointly signed with the group’s National Public Relations Officer, Hon. Obinna Adibe, said the appointments were totally unacceptable to Ndigbo, maintaining that they violated the principle of federal character, which is enshrined in the Nigerian constitution.
“We stand to condemn this glaring hatred for Ndigbo by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari. We recall that apart from several other appointments, Buhari’s government has also appointed Service Chiefs and in a similar manner, he sidelined the South-East zone.
“As if that was not enough, the long-awaited position of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, has come at last and this government deemed nobody from the South-East qualified enough to occupy that position, which was earlier zoned to Ndigbo.
“We are indeed shocked by this turn of events, which are totally at variance with Mr. President’s earlier stand that he was for nobody but that he was for everybody. We are at a loss where this statement fits in, considering all the actions he has taken so far, which are all against the interest of Ndigbo.
“Where is the justice; where is the equity; where is the one Nigeria? How long shall Ndigbo be pushed to the walls?
“The Ohaneze Youth Council is saying it loud and clear that these appointments are unacceptable to us and we urge Mr. President to reverse them, otherwise it would appear that there is a grand-design to annihilate the Igbos out of the political and economic system in this country.”
Isiguzoro further stated that apart from the neglect Ndigbo had suffered in the area of appointments, it was also curious that the Buhari-led government had suspended work on the second Niger Bridge.
He stressed that “all these are pointers to the fact that we are becoming endangered species in Nigeria. The Second Niger Bridge is a project that touches on the economic life of the entire South-East and we find it curious that the Federal Government is not ready to attach any priority to it.
“We use this medium to urge Mr. President to right these wrongs and move the country forward as one. Tribalism has never paid Nigeria and this period will not make any difference”.