By Simon Ebebulem
BENIN CITY â€”Â A socio-cultural organisation in Edo State, the Gia Da Nâ€™Edo Movement, Nigeria, has lamented what it described as marginalisation of Binis in the Edo South Senatorial District of the state in spite of the fact that it constitutes 54 per cent of the population in the state.
In a mission statement read at its maiden meeting in Benin City by the former Chairman of Oredo Local Government Council, Mr Victor Ebomoyi, the group said the people of the area have demonstrated magnani-mity in the face of â€œsystemic deprivation, manipulation and marginalisationâ€.
The group argued that the delineated constituencies and the local government as it stands today, does not reflect Edo South dominance in population and land mass, adding that it was only fair that justice was done or seen to be done.
â€œWe demand strategic positions and appointments both at the state and federal levels for our people who, in all fairness, should enjoy these patronages.
â€œWe call for a review of the present structural/political and economic imbalance in Edo State which currently put the minority over and above the majority. Conscious of the fact that the people of Edo South constitute more than half of the population of Edo State, yet are under-represented in all spheres of our political and economic life through serious conspiracy within and outside the state,â€ it stated.
Reacting to insinuation that the group was out to fight Governor Adams Oshiomoh-le, who is from the North senatorial district, the Special Adviser to the governor on Political Matters, Mr Charles Idahosa, debunked the insinuation, saying, â€œpeople are always politicising issues like thisâ€.
â€œThis movement cuts across political lines and the purpose is to galvanize our people to speak with one voice.
â€œThe Comrade governor is doing well for the Benis and the entire Edo people, so we cannot fight him. You all agreed with me that 70 per cent of his budget is all situated in the Benin speaking areas and you can see the massive jobs he is doing in Benin .
â€œSo the Benis are seriously with Oshiomohle because he has done very well for them . All we want to do is to talk with one voice, just like the Arewa, the Ohaneze and other groups, that is just the purpose.â€