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2015:NORTH NEEDS SARDUANA,DANJUMA-KALU

By Emeka Obasi
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As the South-east continues to push for power shift in 2015,leading exponent,Dr.Orji Uzor Kalu Sunday urged ambitious Northern politicians to tap from the wisdom of Alhaji Ahmadu Bello,Generals Yakubu Danjuma and Abdusalami Abubakar.

According to Kalu,the trio,all prominent Northerners,looked at the larger picture even when opportunity offered itself,and chose not to satisfy self first.

He said,"Alhaji Bello,the Sarduana,would have been the first Prime Minister of Nigeria in 1957,but he dashed it to Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa.As Premier of the North,he brought fellow Premiers Dr.Nnamdi Azikiwe and Chief Obafemi Awolowo together,ahead of the 1957 Constitutional Conference in London where among other things,it was agreed that the country should have a Nigerian Prime Minister.Even when Zik and Awo took up positions in Lagos,the Sarduana chose to remain in Kaduna."

On Danjuma,Kalu brought in the assasination of General Murtala Mohammed in 1976."Gen.Danjuma could have usurped power then.The Head-of-State was dead,his next in command Gen.Olusegun Obasanjo's fate was unknown since the bullets meant for him landed on Ordnance boss Col.Reys Mathew Dumuje.As Army Chief,Danjuma sent Lt.Col.Ibrahim Babangida to shake Lt.Col Bukar Dimka,and later, Lt.Col. Chris Ugokwe to clear Radio Nigeria.He would later encourage Obasanjo who had emerged from Col. Olu Bajowa's house, to take over".

The former Abia state governor also gave credit to Gen.Abubakar."Here was a man who was to be retired in June 1998,his month of birth[June 13 1942] and a tough month[following June 12]since 1993.Then he got the Presidency on a platter of gold.With both Air-force and Army background,Gen.Abubakar could have continued with military dictatorship.He chose to leave in 11 months,a man of honour,"Kalu emphasised.

Concluding, Kalu said the journey to 2015,needed more men of honour and transparent honesty,leaders with a sense of history,patriots who would stand up against marginalisation and preach a Fair Deal for the Igbo.

Signed

Emeka Obasi.