As Abia joins the rest of the states across the country to elect a governor in March this year, some elders in the State, senior lawyers, and academics have insisted that power must shift from the South of the state to the North.
They said this will be in the interest of equity, justice, and fairness and must not be truncated to maintain the peace and stability the state enjoys.
The ruling PDP had ignored calls to zone its governorship candidate to Abia North, and instead opted for Abia Central, a development some stakeholders believe undermines existing rotational arrangement in the state.
They took time to trace the history of zoning and democracy in the state and maintained that the palpable tension existing within the state political atmosphere was needless since history supports their insistence.
According to them, since Abia Central and South have had their eight years each in the governorship, power should shift to Abia North where it started in 1999.
Prof. Nwadinaobi Ugochukwu Esomono, Dr. Lawrence Ubani, ESV Olekanma, Dr. Amaka Onubogu, Pastor Caleb Awa, and Dr. Idika Kalu were amongst the 17 leaders and stakeholders that signed the document calling for respect for the zoning arrangement in the state.
The leaders said power returning to Abia North was sacrosanct, noting that it is the only way to ensure peace, justice, and fairness in the state.
The leaders contended that the established zoning formula has brought peace and created a conducive environment for the rapid political and socio-economic development of the state.
“Prominent Abia sons like the former President of the Senate, Adolphus Wabara, former Governor Theodore Orji, former SSG, Dr. Eme Okoro, and many others have spoken like prominent elders endorsing the return of the governorship back to Abia North Senatorial District. It is pertinent for other Abians to speak up now and support the return of power back to Abia North.
“Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu from Abia North in 1999 took the first slot, followed by Theodore Orji from Central Senatorial zone and now Dr. Victor Ikpeazu from Abia South Senatorial zone. Having witnessed this tradition persist, it has gone beyond mere politics, to a phenomenal entrenchment of power rotation within the political ecosystem of Abia State.
“For equity, justice, and fairness, it is expedient that the governorship seat is returned to Abia North Senatorial District. It is morally wrong to support any candidate outside Abia North Senatorial District,” they said.