By ETOP EKANEM
LAGOS—Senator representing Uyo Senatorial District in Akwa Ibom State, Senator Ita Enang, has said that the current moves to amend the 1999 constitution will be done in a way that there will be no need for a referendum as being canvassed by a section of the citizenry.
Enang who stated this during the celebration of Ibiono Ibom Welfare and Development Association, IWADA, Day, in Lagos said: “The people of Nigeria have requested for a referendum, but the constitution can be amended in a way it is set out to be amended. What we are doing is to fulfill that request for referendum by going to the people which is even wider than what the proponents of referendum have suggested.
“We will take the input of everybody into account. The essence of this is to really make sure that the constitution can truly answer and say ‘we the people of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.’”
He said the position of the Senate in state creation “is that we will gather the opinion of the people whether they want states created; we will gather the opinion of the people whether the states created so far are viable; whether the creation of states is the problem of Nigeria or we should rather find a way of creating employment, making our industry to work, making our currency stronger.”
“We will obey the people. What they say is what we will do. We have not taken a position on whether we should create states or not. We are listening to the people and we will do what they want us to do.”
On whether Nigerians need constitution amendments, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Rules and Business, said the Senate was yet to take a stand on which state to be created, noting: “The people want constitution amendments and have submitted memorandum.
The duty of the legislature is that when the people have submitted memorandum, we have to act to take a decision on them. So the people want the constitution amended. Bills have been sponsored, requests have been made, so we the legislature will have to work by responding to them.
Earlier in his welcome address on the occasion, President, IWADA, Lagos, Akparawa Tony Udoekong appealed for the creation of local government area from the present Ibiono Ibom Local Government Area. The occasion witnessed presentation of awards to deserving indigenes and non-indigenes of Ibiono, including Senator Ita Enang among others.