Photo Credit: Tribune

All Progressives Congress chieftain, Joe Igbokwe is undoubtedly a very controversial figure. He is not just controversial, he is also a divisive person because of the remarks he makes especially about the Igbo race.

Joe Igbokwe believes that the South East is the architect of her problems and that instead of blaming the North or any other part of the country for its political and socio-economic challenges, the Igbo leaders should rather look inwards to find answers to its myriads of problems.

Igbokwe has hardly ever sympathized with the plight of the South East, rather he is always on the offensive and critical of the region.

Photo Credit: BBC

That is why when he recently said in a Punch interview that the Igbos have suffered injustices in Nigeria, a lot of people were shocked. It was an unusual remark from an unusual fellow. But why did the APC chieftain said Igbos have suffered injustices? And what kind of injustice is he talking about.

That will be the focus of this article.

The South-East geo-political zone has 5 states, one less than the other 5 geo-political zones

This is one of the major reasons for the many lamentations in the South East. Indeed, it is a big part of why Igbo leaders alleged that the region is being marginalized.

So every other geo-political zones have six states (North West has 7), but the South East has five; one state less than the other zones. The natural implication of this is that the region gets the least in terms of monthly allocations from the federal government. And with 89 Local Government Areas, the South East has the least number of local governments among all regions, while North West has the highest with 176, just about double the number for South East. That is actually not fair!

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But the federal government is not entirely to blame for this because political polarisation in the South East and greed has also played a part.

For instance, during the 2012 constitutional review process by the National Assembly, the region was asked to meet among themselves and create one state from the South East.They could not reach an agreement. According to the media report, almost every Local government in the South East wanted to become a separate state. At the end of the day, the constitutional review process was concluded without the creation of an additional state for the South East.

Photo Credit: BellaNaija

Can that be blamed on the federal government? I believe that if the Ndigbos can agree among themselves and create one state, the National Assembly and Federal government will sanction it. But will they?

In everything we share in this country, we get the least

I am persuaded that what Igbokwe was talking about here concerns federal government projects. For instance, it has been said that the federal government roads in the South East are the worst in the country. More so, the region has the least federal presence in the country, etc. What has become clear is that the region has been left to carter for itself.

Photo Credit: THisday

This is also true, but what is also true is that the Igbo leaders themselves have not been fair to their people. When you take a critical look at the money allocated to the region over the years and compare it with what is on the ground, they don’t match. The South-East must hold its leaders to the same standard it has held the Federal Government. Because like they say, ‘charity begins at home.’

Are you surprised about Joe Igbokwe’s comment about the South East? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below. While you are at it, also like and share the story so that others can comment too.

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