Former Minister of Aviation Osita Benjamin Chidoka has indicated that he declined to contest in the forthcoming Governorship election to respect the zoning arrangement.
Chidoka who is also a Former Corps Marshal and Chief Executive of Federal Road Safety Corps spoke in Abuja while marking his 50th Birthday with 50, 000 steps in a road keep fit jogging through the streets of Abuja.
Chidoka in 2017 ran for the governorship of Anambra State, Southeast Nigeria as a member of the United Progressive Party, but was defeated by Willie Obiano of the All Progressives Grand Alliance.
Chidoka had been one of the founding members of the People’s Democratic Party.
Continuing he said he said “Multiple Opinion polls while talking to the ordinary people they told me they would like the zoning to be respected and I decided that since I come from the zone that has taken its turn.
On the many issues surrounding the Anambra election he said, “Anambra has its peculiarities and I think they would resolve themselves as we progress but I did not run because I thought here was need for me to respect the zoning arrangement in Anambra State.
“When people talk about this zoning issue it is actually a good thing in National building.
“So for the country I just believe that in 2023 the country must confront its demons and allow a southerner to be President of Nigeria and precisely a southerner from the South East of Nigeria.
“Anything short of that will mean that Nigeria has given into cynicism giving into hopelessness and if we give in to the hoplessness and our youth continue to disconnect then our future as a nation is in danger.
“I think we should without any proving from anybody just follow the natural order of our zoning in Nigeria. In the South East zoning has brought peace as Governorship in the South East been rotating”
On his Challenges and how he was able to overcome them, he said, “There have been multiple challenges, being all of that at 44 leaves you rutherless and, losing an election at the prime of your youth and carrier can be so
But luckily for me I did what General Gowon did, I went back-to-back school and got the law degree.
“This year I have a law degree from Base University and also have expanded on my private businesses.
“In life everybody should be prepared for the highs and the lows even as we were running today there were moments you think you should quit, there were moments I think I can’t make it to the last line but that is the purpose of life, to just put your mind on the goal and to pursue it relentlessly.”
On the state of the nation he said the nation is in a bad shape.
“The three things for me that has put the nation in a bad state are mismanagement of our diversity, the great divisions that we have sown in the nation, a government that has been insensitive to multiple part of Nigeria.
“I think that has made it a difficult time for everybody. I don’t just want to blame the Government of the day. I just need to say that the Nigerian Elites needs to create new consensus
He expressed gratitude to God for manifold blessings because lives race he said is not to the swiftest, nor the strongest.
“Those whose palm-kernels were cracked for them by a benevolent spirit should not forget to be humble”
“Because it is not like if some other people are making their efforts but a mixture of opportunity and hardwork sometime will give you benefit
On why he decided to Mark his Golden Jubilee with a road walk, he said, “I am an avid fitness buff, one of the things I will like to pass onto my younger friends and generation is the need to keep fit. I got it from my boss the late Chief Ojo Madueke when he was Minister.
“He was already in his 50s and I could not keep pace with him when we ride bicycle. The day he rode the famous bicycle to the cabinet I could not make it, I was out of breadth half way less than one quarter of the way. I took a decision then to improve my fitness and wellbeing. I took my way down from 118 to 95kg, since then I have been faithful to exercise every morning”
“So every year since I turned 45 I have marked with 45,000, steps, last year was 49000, this year we have done 50, 000 steps.
“We started 4am and it is ending about 9am so I think we did well, we had a lot of well-wishers. Interestingly this running is going on in the 36 States of the Federation. The people in green shirts are the friends of Osita in Abiluja. Same in Oyo, Ondo, Sokoto, in Kaduna, in Bayelsa, in Kano.
“They are all running today and the idea is that the young generation should be infused with the idea of physical fitness and, the idea that you can be young and be a leader. My hope is that more young people should be in that leadership position I was when I was 35years.
“I pray that the Government of the day will give allocation even deliberately to just groom young persons because at that age you are idealistic, you are hopeful, you are trusting in your abilities.
“If you are looking at things from the positive sides of life, you do not give into the cynicism that has become the bane of our country.
“Sometimes you don’t even remember ethnicity but as you grow older so many things come in to make you to look back. The whole idea of the executive is to improve fitness of young people and to mobilise them.”