All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu on Wednesday reiterated his plan to make Southeast industrial and manufacturing hubs if elected in next month’s election.
He also promised to create two seaports in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, to boost industrialisation, thereby creating jobs for youths.
The APC standard bearer spoke on his plans for the Southeast at a rally held at the Michael Okpara Square, Enugu, where he also promised to develop the mineral resources in the region, including coal, to propel its economic recovery.
At the rally, Imo State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodimma, who is the Campaign Coordinator for Southeast, urged the people of the five states to shun ethnic and regional politics.
The rally was attended by APC Deputy National Chairman (South), Emma Enekwu, who represented National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu; former Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole; former Akwa Ibom State Governor, Senator Godswill Akpabio; Ebonyi State Governor, Engr. Dave Umahi; former House of Representatives Speaker, Rt. Hon. Dimeji Bankole; APC National Women Leader, Dr Beta Edu; Kashim Imam; Nweze Gbazuagu; former Chief of Army Staff, Lt. General Azubuike Onyeabor Ihejirika (rtd); Senator Andy Uba; Hon. Osita Izunaso; Chief Emma Eneukwu; Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa; former APC presidential aspirant, Mr Nick Jackrich; Nkeiruka Onyejiocha; Abia and Ebonyi States governorship candidates, Ikechi Emenike; Francis Nwifuru; and former deputy governor of Anambra State, Dr Nkem Okeke.
Urging the people to collect their Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs), Tinubu said the next election would liberate and rekindle hope for a brighter future.
He said: “If you elect me as your president, we will work together. We will create an industrial hub in Enugu, Imo, Ebonyi, Abia, and Anambra States.
“We will also create two seaports in Port Harcourt and establish fabricating engines.
“Enugu will become an industrial hub, thereby creating jobs for the youths and all of you. You have incredible mineral resources to propel the economic recovery of the Southeast. You have an agricultural power that can produce many cash crops.
“Also, assembling plants can be created with flourishing businesses. All you need to do is to partner with the Federal Government”.
Tinubu added: “My people of Enugu State, nothing is impossible unless you don’t put your mind into it. Together, nothing can stop us if we are determined.
“We will make Enugu, Imo, Ebonyi, Abia, and Anambra States and the entire Southeast a regional business hub, the manufacturing centre of Nigeria. It is very possible.
“Don’t wait for the white man to do this job for us. We’re brilliant enough, we’re great thinkers, we can fabricate, we can develop and we can mould; we can build engines and we can turn our coal to industry.
“In Britain and America, they are still using their coal to fire turbines and generate electricity for their industries. We have the right to do so.
“Be bold Nigeria. Wake up Africa. Let’s use what we have to develop our country. Let’s turn our coal to money. Let’s turn our gas to money.
“Now they say the price of crude oil is falling. Whatever it is, I am a realist, pragmatic, authentic, blessed, and brilliant man, a thinker. So, let’s use what we have to develop our country.
“We can have agro-processing centres. We have over 200 million people to feed. We are not going to starve to death.
“I lived abroad for about 17 years. I’ve managed their businesses. Let us take care of our home. We can do it. Nigeria is highly blessed by God. For us to achieve Nigeria of our dream, you have to be ready to make sacrifices and with strong determination, we can achieve greater things”.
Tinubu chided the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for seeking Southeast’s votes, saying that for 16 years, the party mismanaged the resources meant for the region and the country.
He stressed: “Today, APC has fulfilled what PDP could not do in 16 years for the Southeast. In 2001, they came here to do foundation laying for the Second Niger Bridge but eventually did not do anything. They still went back when they were seeking for votes. Yet, they did nothing. It was the APC government that came, promised, and completed that bridge. It will soon be commissioned and the era of staying three days on the road during the festive seasons would be a thing of the past. I’m sure your joy will know no bounds.
“PDP has no shame. They deceived Peter Obi to leave APGA to join them and now he has joined Labour Party. Now, they have abandoned him.
“For 16 years, they (PDP) didn’t do anything for Southeast. They misappropriated the monies meant for projects and accused themselves. You know who I’m talking about. Obasanjo and Atiku. That’s the reason for their unending quarrel. Don’t believe them anymore. They have been fooling you for a long time”.
Tinubu, who commended members of the APC in Enugu State for respecting and renewing the hope of the party and Nigeria, assured them that they would not be left behind if they continued to support him.
He promised to work with the Enugu State APC governorship candidate, Uche Nnaji, saying: “It is only when you vote for me and make him the governor, we will share in the larger gain of Nigeria success.”
Tinubu urged the people to get their PVCs to vote and change the course of the nation’s future.
He said: “Don’t throw away your votes. Shine your eyes, beat your chest, sacrifice in the sun, be in the rain. Get your PVC because it is your way to success, freedom and prosperity. It is only when you invest that you can harvest”.