By Peter Okutu, Abakaliki
A group is known as Ebonyi South Youth Congress, ESYC, yesterday faulted the zoning formula for the 2023 governorship election as announced by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in the State.
The youth organization argued that it was wrong for the PDP to zone the 2023 gubernatorial election to two senatorial zones of the State stressing that the concept of Abakaliki Bloc was no longer in existence in the State.
In a statement issued in Abakaliki, the President of Ebonyi South Youth Congress, Mr Uka Ibom Anya called on leaders and Ebonyi people to be vigilant at all times and not to allow agents of confusion to destroy the State by resorting to archaic zoning formulae.
According to the statement: “After an emergency meeting of Ebonyi South Youth Congress(ESYC) held in Abakaliki, today, Monday, 27th September 2021, the following issues were discussed and addressed by the Congress.
“That the attention of Ebonyi South Youths Congress has been drawn to the interview granted to some journalists on 23rd September 2021 in Abakaliki by the Caretaker Chairman of the PDP, Elder Fred Udogu, where he was quoted to have stated that the PDP has zoned the 2023 Governorship seat to Abakaliki block, made up of Ebonyi North and Ebonyi Central Senatorial Zones.
“Since we read the news report in the newspapers, we went on to make enquires as to the authenticity of the report. Our finding is that no such decision was taken at any meeting or organ of the party. Maybe, the Caretaker Chairman was merely expressing his personal opinion on the matter and not necessarily the official position of the party.
“We, the members of the Youth Congress reiterate our position that it will be wrong for the PDP to zone the Governorship position to two zones in the state, namely, the Ebonyi North and Ebonyi Central Senatorial zones without considering the fate of Ebonyi South Senatorial district. There is nothing like Abakaliki Block or Afikpo Block.
“The two blocks existed momentarily after Ebonyi state was created in 1996. On the creation of Ebonyi state, the Abakaliki block had six LGAs while the Afikpo block had four LGAs. Shortly afterwards, three new LGAs, namely Ebonyi, Ezza North and Ivo were created and the state was split into three Senatorial Zones. Anybody talking of two blocks of Abakaliki and Afikpo now is introducing sectionalism into the state.
“Since 1996, the politics of the state has been based on Zoning in the three Senatorial districts. We urge our leaders and Ebonyi people, in general, to be vigilant at all times and not to allow agents of confusion to destroy the state by resorting to archaic zoning formulae.
“It is our view that the Governorship slot should be thrown open to the three Senatorial districts or we go back to Ebonyi North where the zoning started in 1999.
“The PDP in Ebonyi state should adopt all measures that would bring all parts of the state together, to ensure unity, justice and equity in the state.”