January 31, (THEWILL) – Former Governor of Imo State, Senator Rochas Okorocha has officially declared his intention to run for the presidency in 2023 under the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
THEWILL reports that Okorocha had last week informed Senate President Ahmad Lawan of his presidential bid.
Speaking during a World Press Conference in Abuja on Monday, the Senator representing Imo West Senatorial District at the National Assembly, said the Igbos are the only people who have businesses across the different geopolitical zones of Nigeria. He said the stance of the Igbos runs contrary to the agitation championed by the Proscribed Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB).
He said his leadership would usher in a new Nigeria where youths would be given the chance to develop their skills and contribute to the development of the country.
Reiterating that his leadership will make education free for all Nigerian children to ensure that everyone is educated, Okorocha said, “My heart bleeds because of that boy in Maiduguri or Katsina that cannot go to school. I’m not satisfied when poverty becomes the order of the day. Many countries have tagged us as the poverty capital of the world, I do not agree.”
“The truth is that we are a great nation and time will come when it will be made manifest. To the youths, If I become your president, I will hand it over to the next generation. I’m not too young to run and not too old to run, I’m only 57.
“We have 14 million out-of-school children. I will declare free education, it is something I have done”, he added.
Responding to questions about the performance of the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration, Senator Okorocha commended the President for his efforts, saying Nigerians cannot blame him for the problems in the country.
He stated that the problems of Nigeria are bigger than the resources available and that the country needs a leader who can create wealth and turn things around. He, however, stressed that his administration will be better than President Buhari’s a billion times.
“Buhari has done well, but he will never wish to be the best. I will beat Buhari’s record a billion times,” he added.
Senator Rochas Okorocha (APC, Imo West), has formally declared his intention to contest the 2023 presidential election, saying his political party should jettison the idea of zoning.
Okorocha however appealed to his party, the APC, to allow a level playing ground, giving all interested candidates the opportunity to fight for the position of their choice without restriction to region.
“I hear people talking about zoning, I’m not a candidate of zoning, I am a candidate of justice. Maybe the south-east has not been able to present their matter very well before the rest of Nigerians.
“I appeal to my party – APC, to allow a level-playing ground. And the south-east must know that power is not given, it is taken. You must reach out to people who you want to vote for you. But let justice reign.”
Okorocha, who is in a long-running battle with his successor in Imo, Governor Hope Uzodimma, also promised to reunite the country if elected.