In a recent interview on FLO 94.9 FM Umuahia, former Minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka, shed light on the reasons behind the South-East’s failure to secure the presidency in the 2023 elections. He emphasized the necessity for the region to forge political alliances and build a strong coalition with other geopolitical zones in Nigeria.
Chidoka firmly asserted that the current approach taken by South-Eastern politicians would not guarantee victory for a presidential candidate from the region. Drawing a parallel with the South West, which transitioned from opposition to a central role in Nigerian politics, Chidoka highlighted the importance of alliances. The South West’s strategic alignment with the North, he noted, had solidified its political relevance since Nigeria’s return to democracy in 1999.
Chidoka also urged South-Easterners to revisit historical examples of successful political alliances, such as the NCNC/NEPU, NCNC/NPC, and NPN/NPP accords, where the South East played crucial political leadership roles.
He stressed that relying solely on votes or candidates from the South-East was insufficient for achieving the goal of producing a South-Eastern president. Instead, he advocated for building alliances with other power blocs, asserting that this could pave the way for a South-Easterner to occupy Aso Rock, Nigeria’s presidential residence.
Chidoka went on to suggest that the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) could have secured the 2023 Presidency if they had chosen to zone the presidential ticket to the South East with a Northerner as the running mate. He pointed out that the South West was swiftly taking the lead in the coalition and alliance strategies, positioning itself advantageously in Nigerian politics.
In conclusion, Chidoka emphasized the need for the South-East to reengage in political coalitions and negotiations with other regions to increase their chances of winning the presidency. He underscored that this collaborative approach was vital, given the evolving dynamics of Nigerian politics.
Shifting his focus to security concerns, Chidoka expressed sympathy for the South-Eastern governors, acknowledging the worsening security situation across the nation. He advised the governors to judiciously utilize security votes to address these challenges effectively.