By Sunday Ani
Ahead of the 2023 governorship in Abia State, the People Democratic Party (PDP) stakeholders in Old Bende zone have rejected the party zoning arrangement, which ceded the governorship of the state to Abia North and Abia Central simultaneously, insisting that it was the turn of Abia North.
In communique by the stakeholders after a meeting on political development in the state as it concerned Abia North Senatorial zone, held on April 16, at Bordex Court, Abiriba, Ohafia Local Government Area, stakeholder who described as existential threat the move to deny Abia North the seat in 2023, said they were determined to ensure that Abia charter of Equity was upheld with power returning to Abia North in 2023.
Part of the communiqué read: “That we totally reject the zoning arrangements announced by the ruling PDP that the Governorship of Abia state has been zoned to Abia North and Abia Central simultaneously.
“We reaffirm that it is the turn of Abia North to produce the next governor of the state going by the charter of Equity endorsed by the founding fathers of the state
“That it is morally offensive and an attempt to create political crisis in the state, the current efforts by Ngwa people to hold on to power after eight years against the spirit and letters of the charter of Equity.
“That Abia for the purposes of sharing political offices and other amenities is made of three zones of Abia North,Abia central and Abia South. Old Aba division and old Bende division are not recognized by the 1999 Constitution (as amended) which is currently in operation.
“Arising from the above, it is the turn of Abia North to produce the next governor of the state and we urge our brothers and sisters from other zones to respect the charter of Equity and support us as we supported them in 2007, 2011, 2015 and 2019.
“To actualise this legitimate quest of our people, it was resolved that we urge all political parties in Nigeria to choose their governorship candidate from Abia North if they wish to win Abia State in 2023.
“That no Abia North son or daughter should accept the deputy Governorship position to any candidate outside Abia North and that no Abia North son or daughter should accept the position of campaign Director General or manager or coordinator to any Governorship candidate outside Abia North.
“That a machinery has been set in motion to sanction any son or daughter from Abia North who sabotages the current efforts of the stakeholders to enthrone a governor of Abia North extraction in 2023.
“That since the stakeholders are from across party lines and composed of academics, entrepreneurs, politicians, the clergy and other strata of the society, they will intensify consultations across the state to ensure that the project is realized.
“That the Governor of Abia State, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, being a product of equity, should refrain from any act that will set the state on fire.
“That the governor should abandon the self succession agenda of his Ngwa people and toe the line of his predecessors by endorsing Abia North as the rightful zone to produce the next governor of the state.”