By Sunday Ani
Former member of the House of Representatives, Anayo Edeh has enjoined people of Enugu State to respect the existing zoning arrangement in the state.
He said that for justice, equity and fairness to prevail, an indigene of Nkanu East Local Government Area of the state should be supported to emerge as successor to Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi in 2023. He stressed that in 2023, the governorship seat should be rotated back to Enugu East Senatorial Zone, where Nkanu East Local Government belongs, insisting that for equity, justice and fairness to prevail, other local government areas in the zone should give Nkanu East a chance because it has neither produced the governor of the state nor a senator for the zone since it was created in 1996.
Edeh lamented that some politicians have started making some subterranean moves to thwart the existing agreement to rotate the governorship seat among the three senatorial zones of Enugu North, Enugu East and Enugu West.
Speaking on behalf of the people of Nkanu-East, Edeh decried the deliberate exclusion of his people from major appointive and elective positions in government at all levels, saying it has impoverished them and caused so much pain on the people.
He expressed worries about the on-going political horse-trading which now involves citizens from almost all the three zones jostling for the number one position despite the existing zoning arrangement.
He condemned a situation where no indigene from Nkanu-East has either been elected as governor of the state or a Senator representing the Enugu-East Senatorial District, since the local government was created in 1996 by late General Sani Abacha.
“Going by the rotation arrangement in Enugu State, it is now the turn of Nkanu-East to produce the next Governor. Nkanu-East has capable sons, such as Peter Mbah and Evarest Nnaji (Odengene), who could build from where the current governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi would stop.
“Already, some prominent indigenes of the state have started positioning themselves for the office of governor, and have begun consultations across the state to generate support and sympathy for themselves.
“The ambition of some of these governorship aspirants is out of place and improper because there is no consideration for equity and fairness in their pursuit. Enugu State has a zoning arrangement, and it should be kept intact in the interest of peace, equity and justice among the three zones in the state,” he stated.
Edeh noted that the current zoning arrangement in the state began in 1992 with Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo from Enugu-North. He said Nwodo was succeeded by Senator Chimaraoke Nnamani from Enugu-East Senatorial District, who was eventually succeeded by Sullivan Chime from Enugu-West, thereby completing the cycle.
He further disclosed that the new cycle started from Enugu-North with Gov Ugwuanyi and that following the arrangement, it is the turn of Enugu East. He insisted that indigenes of local government areas that had produced governors from the zone should be fair to others, particularly Nkanu-East, which has neither produced a governor nor a Senator since its creation. “So, since all the three senatorial districts have produced governors, the rotation should now move back to Enugu-East Senatorial District with Nkanu-East producing one of her own as the next governor,” he submitted.