The South-East chapter of the All Progressives Congress says Igbo leaders who are opposing the probe of former President Goodluck Jonathan are desecrating the Igbo tradition.

It said the Igbo leaders who are supporting the former President are in breach of the traditional admonition which forbids Igbo from identifying with thieves or alleged thieves.

Several Igbo leaders, including the Chairman of the Igbo Leaders of Thought, Prof. Ben Nwabueze, and the Secretary-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Joe Nwaorgu, had in recent times opposed President Muhammadu Buhari’s decision to restrict the planned probe to Jonathan’s administration.

They insisted that Jonathan’s government should not be probed unless other previous administrations were included.

However, reacting to the development on Sunday, the South-East APC, in a statement by its spokesman, Mr. Osita Okechukwu, told the Igbo leaders to stop desecrating Igbo tradition by supporting Jonathan.

In the statement titled, ‘Stop desecration of Igbo tradition’, Okechukwu wondered why Jonathan’s defence was being championed by Igbo leaders, rather than the ex-President’s Ijaw kinsmen.

The statement read, “The South-East zonal chapter of the APC calls on Igbo leaders, in the name of defending our dear ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, to stop the desecration of the long standing Igbo tradition and by extension, our revered ancestors.

“Our worry is that the timeless Igbo tradition which admonishes us not to steal, and not to defend or associate with rogues or even alleged rogues is being flagrantly breached by prominent Igbo sons, crying more than Ijaw sons and daughters.

“We have yet to find any sentence where any of them, even our revered icon, erudite and constitutional lawyer, Prof. Ben Nwabueze, in any form denied the mindless, pervasive and unbridled corruption which pervaded ex-President Jonathan’s regime.”

Okechukwu equally condemned Nwaorgu’s advice that Buhari should extend the probe to the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

The South-East APC spokesman accused Nwaorgu of deliberately blocking a planned meeting between Buhari and Ohanaeze Ndigbo before the elections.

According to Okechukwu, Buhari conveyed his request for the meeting, where he intended to “chart the way forward with Ndigbo”, in a letter forwarded to the Ohanaeze Ndigbo secretariat in November 2014.

The statement added, “May we appeal to Chief Joe Nwaorgu and his cohorts, if actually the interest of Ndigbo is what they are fighting for, to climb down from their high horses and stop the hate narratives and embrace the true position that Ndigbo stands to gain more from President Buhari’s regime, if ever we gained from our massive support to former President Jonathan.”

The South-East APC argued that “Ndigbo like all hardworking groups in the country” stand to gain more from Buhari’s administration than Jonathan’s, which it accused of dispensing patronage to cronies.

The party added that the Igbo were more likely to realise their wish to have one of their own as President of the country through Buhari.

According to Okechukwu “The Igbo ethnic merchants and gossip-terrorists who bandy all manners of conspiracy hate theories against President Buhari must come to terms that an eight-year tenure of the man of uncommon integrity is the surest route to the actualisation of President of Igbo extraction, given the zoning convention.”

Copyright PUNCH.

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