The new President-General of Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, has promised to serve the Igbos diligently and defend their course.
Chief Iwuanyanwu made the promise at his inauguration as the new president-general of the apex Igbo body.
The inauguration was held at the old Government Lodge in Enugu on Sunday during the Imeobi meeting (inner caucus) of the group.
Iwuanyanwu said he never nurtured the ambition to be the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, instead, he had the ambition of becoming the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He said: “I contested for the presidency on three occasions but I did not succeed.
“I took my losses in good composure knowing fully well that as a Christian, all powers and promotion come from God.
“But today, destiny has placed squarely on my shoulders the duty of leading the Igbos as the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide.
“I therefore have a duty to valiantly defend Igbo course and I promise Ime-Obi and all Igbo people that by the grace of God I will not fail them.”
The President-General used the occasion to appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to release the Leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, from the detention of the Department of State Services.
Iwuanyanwu said the security situation in the South East was very disturbing, adding that there was very urgent need for a Peace Summit in Igboland.
He added: “I will therefore make a special appeal to Mr. President, General Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, to release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu before the expiration of his tenure in May 29.
“Kanu is very crucial for any key discussion and it is not possible to negotiate any peace while Nnamdi Kanu is in prison.
“It is also important to note that the judiciary has discharged and freed Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
“It will be the joy of many Igbo people and Nigerians to see Mazi Nnamdi Kalu released from detention.”
Iwuanyanwu added that there was a report that his health was deteriorating, adding: “I feel it is important that he is released to have access to his medical doctors so that he does not die in the prison.”
The inauguration was attended by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State, Governor Charles Soludo of Anambra State and other prominent Igbo leaders like Labour party presidential candidate, Peter Obi; Enugu State Governor-elect, Peter Mbah; and former Imo State Governor, Chief Ikedi Ohakim.
Others were members of the National Assembly; Ministers; Chief Adolphus Wabara; and former President of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, amongst others.
The Governors of Ebonyi State, who is also the Chairman, South-East Governor’s Forum, David Nweze Umahi; Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodinma; and Abia State Governor, Okezie Ikpeazu, who were absent at the meeting, were represented by their deputies.