Why Anambra government insists on zoning 2021 guber, by Obi-Okoye
Governor Willie Obiano’s Chief Political Adviser, Ifeatu Obi-Okoye, yesterday, declared that the Anambra State government’s support for the South Senatorial District to produce Obiano’s successor in 2021 was to ensure equity, peace and continuous development of the state.
The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) led government had insisted that shifting power to the zone was part of its campaign promises in the last governorship election, stressing that the opposing were doing so for their selfish interests.
Obi-Okoye told The Guardian that it was hypocritical for certain people who had canvassed zoning the country’s presidency to the South East in 2023 to oppose it in the state.
His words: “In the last election, APGA, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) zoned their governorship position to the North Senatorial District, as the zone had never produced the governor of the state.
“Anambra Central Senatorial District did three years and 10 months under Dr. Chris Ngige and eight years under Peter Obi. So, the zone held the governorship for 11 years and if we are talking about equity, we must now consider the Southern zone.
“The South had its turn under Chinwoke Mbadinuju for four years and did not have a second term. It also had Chukwuemeka Ezeife for two years, making six years and at the end of Obiano’s tenure, the North would have done its eight years.
“So when we are talking about equity, the south is the only zone that has not had the governorship for eight years. So, equity demands that South should have it.
“An argument can only ensue when the South has had it for four years, but for now, it remains the only zone that has not had two terms in office.”
Obi-Okoye, who was National Publicity Secretary of the APGA, added that in arguing for zoning, neither the state government nor APGA had any particular individual or candidate in mind, insisting that the Obiano-led administration and APGA were interested in enthroning sanity and deepening democracy in Anambra State.
He refuted allegations that traditional rulers were being coerced to endorse the zoning principle, saying that the monarchs and town union organisations had worked with the state government to promote good governance.
Obi-Okoye asked those opposing zoning to think about the overall interest of the state, stressing that it was unfair for a particular segment to continue to retain power to the disadvantage of other parts of the state.