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2nd Niger bridge: It’ll be ingratitude to say Buhari neglected south-east, says Uzodimma

Ayodele Oluwafemi

Hope Uzodimma, governor of Imo, says it will amount to “ingratitude” for people from the south-east to say President Muhammadu Buhari neglected the region.

Uzodimma said only the Buhari-led administration fulfilled the promise of completing the second Niger bridge.

On March 8, Babatunde Fashola, minister of works and housing, said the second Niger bridge will be completed in April.

Speaking on Monday in an interview with Channels, the Imo governor said successive governments before Buhari’s administration paid lip service to the completion of the bridge.


“Today, whether you like it or not, the party to beat is APC. I come from the south-east. Since after the civil war, the only gateway out of the south-east — the entire old eastern Nigeria — was that old river Niger bridge,” he said.

“Government after government came, made promises and paid lip service to the promises. From 1979 to 1983 — the second republic — we were promised the second Niger bridge.

“From 1999 to 2007, we were promised the second Niger bridge. Until 2015, President Muhammadu Buhari, as I speak to you, has spent over N360 billion


“Only last week, I was watching television. I saw the chief of staff to the president, minister of works, minister of labour and productivity inspecting the joining of the bridge for commissioning within the next three months.

“It would be a thing of ingratitude for anybody to come from that region to talk about President Buhari neglecting the old eastern bloc.”

Asked if he is sure that the 2023 presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) will be zoned to the south-east, the Imo governor said the party’s ticket will be given to a politician who has the capacity to win the election.

“This ticket is not an airline ticket. We are talking about having a presidential candidate. It is a decision of the party. It has to be a collective decision,” he added.

“Nobody will get the presidential ticket because he spoke good English on the television. Nobody will get the presidential ticket because he was abusing people on television. It is a decision of the party and many factors will be responsible — covert and overt factors — because at the end of the day, the ticket will be given to a name that can win the election. Winnability is the name.”

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