Renowned economist and former minister of finance, Dr. Kalu Idika Kalu, has hailed former Abia State governor, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, on his decision to join the All Progressives Congress (APC), along with his friends and associates.
Idika Kalu said his support should not come as a surprise to all those who are aware of his position from the formative phase of the alliances that culminated in the emergence of the APC.
A statement signed by the former minister said the move by Uzor Kalu was in strategic synch with broader Igbo long term objectives to reject Igbo irrelevance that many were assigning to Ndigbo in spite of the zone’s continued dominance in other national demographics.
He said Kalu should be applauded and emulated.
He urged other politicians to take a cue from Uzor Kalu, “and at the minimum, seek a merger to belong to the future of power sharing in viable political parties that are truly alternative power blocs in Nigeria.”
According to the former minister: “It is my opinion that Orji Uzor Kalu’s joining of APC is based on the strategic political interest of Ndigbo, an indisputable part of the tripod that holds together Nigeria’s political firmament.
“Let’s organise for our numbers and implicit strength to count maximally. Let’s play smart politics and reserve emotions for our essentially non-political conclaves.
“For long, we have side-stepped this rightful position by ending up, inadvertently, adopting a minority posture in Nigerian politics to the dismay of our people and many of our neighbours and other Nigerians who remember the great legacy of our past heroes in the struggle for Nigerian and African independence.
“When APGA was established, we the foundation members set out, dissatisfied with the way the new PDP was evolving, to create an alternative national party. These moves are without prejudice to the continuous struggle to have a more perfect federal union. As long as we are still part and parcel of this imperfect union, Ndigbo cannot continue to perch in a corner to ask for this or that . We must come squarely back to the high table where the major decisions are taken.
“Igbo is too big, too critically strategic to play in the sidelines. We must re-enter the main bowl of political contestation from viable national parties. We should play a positive role to evolve a strong two alternative party framework that helps to promote a healthy and even playing field that suits Igbo temperament and predilections from our history. Let’s play smart politics for a change.”
“In the meantime, the Alaigbo Development Foundation, along with other Igbo development subgroups was supposed to rebuild Igbo economy, traditions and culture of responsible community governance to support the renewed engagement in national politics. It is the Igbo who are most fitted to undertake this task. Just think about it. So, we should get the Orji Uzor’s and others with their polyglot and long reach to get on with the job, knowing that it is in the long term strategic interests of Ndigbo.”