…Warn of dangers of disrupting zoning arrangement
By Steve Oko
Elders and stakeholders of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, from Abia North, have urged Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu, to ensure ” power rotates back to Abia North in 2023 in keeping with the Abia Charter of Equity which recommends power rotation among the three senatorial zones”.
The elders in a strong-worded statement, signed by the immediate-past Secretary to the State Government, SSG, Dr Eme Okoro, warned of the grave dangers of disrupting the zoning arrangement, which according to them is capable of rupturing the prevailing peace in the state.
The statement made available to Vanguard read in part:” We are here to appeal to you our dear governor to work with other stakeholders and men of goodwill to ensure that power rotates to Abia North come 2023 for justice, fairness and equity to prevail.
“We also enjoin you not to succumb to cheap blackmail and arm-twisting by the zone that wants to retain power or the one that wants to muscle out Abia North because it feels it has enormous resources to do that.
” Any attempt by any of these zones to covet power at the expense of Abia North would only torpedo the peace we have all enjoyed in Abia.
“The flame-throwing by the Ukwa La Ngwa people based on old-time delimitations by the colonial masters for administrative convenience is not just archaic and unexcitingly laughable, it also creates divisions and disunity among the peace-loving people of Abia State.”
Abia North PDP elders warned that the zone would not succumb to threats and forfeit its opportunity to produce the next Abia Governor.
“It would be worthwhile to inform them that threats of violence and intimidation have never been used to secure power in Abia and Abia North, though, a peace-loving people would not be intimidated into abandoning what is due to it.
“The threat of violence and resort to it is an ill-wind that blows no one any good. It would only create disunity among us.
“It is the turn of Abia North to produce the next governor of Abia come 2023. We are ready and we have our worthy sons who are more than capable to steer the ship of state.”
The PDP elders argued that since power rotation in the current democratic dispensation began with the zone in 1999, and had gone round all three senatorial districts, “equity demands that power returns to Abia North in 2023”.
They vowed to resist any attempt to disrupt the power rotation arrangement in the state.
“Being avowed democrats who truly practice what we preach, we must resist any attempt to change the cause of our history. “
The elders urged Gov. Ikpeazu to honour his promise to sustain power rotation, saying that reneging will be dishonourable.
“Great men honour not just their words but also agreements even in the face of difficult choices. We know our governor is an honourable man. For men of honour, their word is their bond and they can go to any length to redeem their word whenever you give it back to them.”
The Abia North stakeholders further argued that all states in the South East have since adopted power rotation among their senatorial districts, advising that Abia should not be an exception.
The statement was later delivered to the PDP Vice Chairman Abia North, Elder Amah Abraham for onward transmission to the party Chairman, Rt. Hon. Asiforo Okere; and Gov. Ikpeazu, respectively.