Friday, 22 April 2022

Back to South: Group Advocate for Micro Zoning Guber Seat to Akamkpa/Biase Fed. Constituency

Mary Undie | 22nd April 2022

As the 2023 gubernatorial election gather momentum, with Parties Primaries fast approaching, a group in the Southern Senatorial District of the state have begun another dimension of zoning conversation in the state. 

The group known as Coalition of Akamkpa/Biase Stakeholders addressing the press said it believed in zoning of critical elective offices as backed up by the 1980 Calabar-Ogoja Accord, stating that the accord also made provision for Micro-zoning. 

It therefore, called on all political parties in the state and stakeholders from the South to consider zoning the governorship seat in the 2023 election to the south and further micro-zone it to Akamkpa-Biase Federal constituency citing Sections 6(a) and 18(i) of the 1980 Calabar-Ogoja Accord in support of their arguments. 

Their statement reads in parts: 

"It is instructive to note that section 6(a) of the 1980 Calabar-Ogoja Accord states that for ''Governor, consideration will be as stipulated in the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. A very special note has to be taken to the fact of the principle of rotation, whereby any community/senatorial district shall not produce a governor twice in succession. Where any senatorial district produces a governor, in the first instance, it will fall on the other senatorial district to produce a governor during the next run."

Stressing their arguments the statement continued, 'Section 18(i) of the Accord further maintains that "as a necessary corollary of this agreement, the concept of senatorial district equality and even development, shall also be applied in the relation of the various clans/ethnic groups within each of the Senatorial District".

"That implicit in the above clauses is the fact that the group, community or part of the Southern Senatorial District that produced the governor of Cross River State from 1999 to 2007, cannot in succession produce the next governor in 2023, when other ethnic groups within the zone have not produced a governor. In the spirit of the Accord, that is tantamount to marginalisation, social exclusion, domination and injustice."

The coalition then threatened to align with the Central Senatorial District against the Southern Senatorial District of the state should their agitation be disregarded.